Wedding Celebrations: A Raleigh Wedding Planner’s Guide

Feature photo by  Stephen Thrift Photography. Knots ‘N Such is a Raleigh wedding planner & florist.


The wedding isn’t the only celebration that a bride needs to prepare for in the journey to marital bliss. There’s also the engagement party, bridal and/or household shower, bachelorette party, bridesmaids luncheon, and rehearsal dinner that need the same level of attention and planning to make them truly spectacular! Not everyone chooses to host these events for various reasons, sometimes only because they’re unsure of their purpose. So Poppy Belle Design, Raleigh Wedding Planner & florist, is here to help and explain a few of the more important ones…


Engagement Party

This is your opportunity to make a grand announcement to friends and family that something special is just around the corner! Engagement parties let your guests join in on the excitement for the coming nuptials and also allow your relatives time to consider how much they can assist with the wedding.


Photo by Krista Joy Photography


Bridal Shower

The bridal shower (not to be confused with a bachelorette party) is when all your ladies get together for light cocktails and gifts! This is the party that Grandma gets invited to, so it’s usually a bit classier.  By the time of the bridal shower,  you want to have your bridal party selected and ready, because they can help with things like sending invitations, sorting your gifts, and arranging for food and drinks. The bridal shower is your cue to sit back and relax, knowing that your wedding is just around the corner and and all your favorite ladies are there with you!


Raleigh Wedding Planner & Florist

Photo by Mabyn Ludke Photography


Rehearsal Dinner

The rehearsal is perhaps the most important pre-wedding event, since it prepares everyone involved in your wedding party and lets them know exactly where to be and when to be there! That aside, these are some of your closest friends and family that have perhaps traveled and taken time off work just for you, so it’s important that you treat them to a nice evening afterward to show them how much you appreciate their investment to making your wedding perfect.


Raleigh Wedding Planner & Florist

Photo by Riley Maclean Photography / Food by Durham Catering Company / China from American Party Rentals


I know preparing for your wedding can seem overwhelming at times, which is all the more reason to allow yourself these extra chances to relax with your loved ones (and open some presents!) before you say “I do”. A great point to remember in this journey is a great planner is happy to take care of every little detail, from your engagement party to your reception, to ensure that your entire wedding experience is nothing but joyful!





Memorable Moments: Tips From a Raleigh Wedding Planner

Feature photo by Ginny Corbett Photography. Knots ‘N Such is a Raleigh wedding planner & florist.


Your wedding reception is the event you’ve been dreaming of for as long as you can remember, and there are some special activities involved that require special attention! Your first dance is a memorable moment for you, the bouquet toss is a memorable moment for your girlfriends, and photo booths are a great way to make capturing moments memorable! Here are a few tips from a Raleigh wedding planner on how you can make these special moments flawless!


First Dances

Most often, the first dance will start with the bride and groom, then move to father of the bride with the bride, then mother of the groom and the groom. These are such special moments, and it’s important to pick out special songs for each. If you’re having a tough time picking a good one, some commonly used songs include “You and Me” by Lifehouse, “Signed, Sealed, Delivered, I’m Yours” by Stevie Wonder, “Wild Horses” by The Rolling Stones, and “At Last” by Etta James.

Also remember, if you get everyone going dancing right after you’ve had your first dance, it can be tough to get them back out there! For this reason, we advise waiting to open the dance floor until after the cake is cut (which also allows your guests to get a quick sugar rush before they start dancing!)


Bridal Party Bubble Dance

Photo by Casey Rose Photography


Bouquet Toss

This is a super fun tradition that I’m hoping never goes out of style! All the single ladies get together to push and shove each other in a lively attempt to catch the highly coveted bouquet!

Song choice is also important here, with some of our favorites being “Ladies Night” by Kool and the Gang, “Where Dem Girls At” by Nikki Minaj, and of course, “All the Single Ladies” by Beyonce. Make sure you pick a fun song and a good time of night that will have your girls pumped up to jump for those flowers! We recommend closer to the end of the night when your guests need to clear the dance floor. We typically schedule it just before the last song of the night.


Raleigh Wedding Planner & Florist

Photo by Amir Luna Photography


Photo Booths

While photo booths may not necessarily be new to the wedding world, there are a lot of different ways to incorporate this activity into your wedding! Some brides have gotten very creative and set up a photo corner, complete with props and a backdrop! Guests take photos then share on social media using the wedding hashtag!

I’ve also seen photo-booth-style guest books, made by placing a Polaroid camera beside the book, along with some props and crafting tools. Guests are directed to take photos of themselves then tape the image into the book with their signature and some fun doodles!

There’s also a variety of professional photo booth vendors that can do amazing things for your wedding, like slo-mo videos, gifs, screen savers, and even custom mugs and other items that can be used as wedding favors!


Raleigh Wedding Planner & Florist


Remember to make your wedding memorable for its uniquely you qualities, and you and your guests will have a night you’ll never forget!




PBD Coordinator

Popular Floral Trends: Tips from a Raleigh Wedding Planner

Feature photo by Lauren V. Allen Photography. Knots ‘N Such is a Raleigh wedding planner & florist.

I understand the importance of floral trends and how they change each year, and the countless possibilities! Traditionally, people believe that certain trends are too “outdated” to work with a more modern bride; however, many of these old traditions are coming back in style! The “Rustic Movement” is giving way to a more modern aesthetic, while holding fast to some classic elements like floral selection. Instead of barn-wood, brides are gravitating toward more metals and glass this year.

So how does the modern bride get the best of both worlds? Every bride wants to be unique, and these five classic trends are a surefire way for her to achieve that originality in a traditionally beautiful, yet modern way.

Pink & Peach Bride Bouquet



Floral Colors

One could say that color is trending this warm season for weddings; however, the latest craze is all about combinations.

  • Go bold: Make a statement with bright bold hues such as pinks, oranges, and lime greens.
  • Muted colors: Go for a cohesive and blended tone with muted tones in the same color family (rose, peach, soft browns, etc.)
  • Bright burgundies and reds: What is more classic than red? These gorgeous hues and shades offer a vibrant pop with a visual impact. Don’t forget to add some dainty pink tones in as well!
  • Whites and greys: Forever a bridal favorite, white is classy and elegant.  This time, ladies, try incorporating lush foliages that also come in this grey hue.
  • The 2017 Pantone Color of the Year, Greenery, is also very popular. However, think subtle, nontraditional, rather than literal uses of this classic shade. Greenery can be used in creative ways such as garlands, wreaths, and table runners.


What’s Old is New

Heirloom varieties such as chrysanthemums, antique carnations, and deeply textured blooms like scabiosa-flowered zinnias, are taking the wedding world by storm. Another fan favorite is Queen Anne’s Lace, which is taking diversity to a new level. These reasonably priced flowers are making a startling comeback in the wedding circuit, being incorporated with higher end flowers and greens. New flower cultivars with bold shapes, colors, and forms, are proving to be must have statement pieces this year. These sought-after seeds are in high demand and local farmers and florists will be fighting to claim these luscious florals.



Raleigh Wedding Planner & Florist

McCardell Photography

Cascading Floral Wedding Bouque

Cascading floral arrangements are hot this season as they offer a lush, romantic feel to any wedding. You may opt for a smaller cascade if you wish to go for a simpler look.  One thing is for certain, no one could ignore the appeal.  Brides are gravitating towards this look as it offers a more tailored look to an otherwise large bouquet, giving off a more organic and natural feel.  The updated designs of these bouquets complement the bride in every way, while not detracting the attention from her.


Special Request Flowers

Recently, there has been a swarm of brides entering floral shops armed with images from social media, asking for more obscure flowers for their bouquets. Some of these long-standing favorites include roses and carnations, but more recent requests have grown to include dahlias, peonies, and eucalyptus..  These requests can be a challenge – and an opportunity – to explain seasonal nature and availability of certain flowers.

Beautiful Flower Crown for Bride

Danell Beede Photography



Stylish Floral 


Move over big, bold floral crowns! Make way for subtle, floral hair accessories. This year, we will see more half halos, floral hair “combs,” and simple sprigs of foliage woven into hairstyles than any year past. Another huge trend that is on the rise is the cuff wrist corsage which offers a more elegant alternative for mothers’ corsages, as well as giving the look and feel of jewelry.  For guys, this will mean mixing more interesting textural elements, such as pods and berries, alongside grasses and focal flowers.

My mantra includes taking traditional elements and modernizing as I’m inspired by the couple themselves! To see my work, visit the Poppy Belle Design Gallery. Interested in what I can do for your wedding? Contact me here!

9 Ways to Illuminate Your Wedding Day – Tips from a Raleigh Wedding Planner & Florist

Feature photo by Thirteenth Moon Photography . Knots ‘N Such is a Raleigh wedding planner & florist.

One of my favorite wedding elements has to be lighting. There are so many beautiful and creative options to choose from….Each as unique and symbolic as the love being expressed. In this week’s blog, we’re putting a spotlight on 9 ways to illuminate your wedding day. 

1. Sky Lanterns

Floating Lantern / Sky Lantern

Photo by PBD

At #1… Sky lanterns are a symbol for play and festivities in Asian cultures. So how do these beautiful floating symbols actually work? They’re typically made of a very thin paper on a light weight frame. A small flame from a candle or other flammable item heats the air inside the lantern causing it to rise into the sky, sorta like a hot air balloon. What a lovely way of symbolizing the beginning of a marriage!


2. Floating Candles

Wedding Table Setting with Floating Candles and Flowers

Photo By Natalie E. Photography

Taking the #2 spot is floating candles. Floating candles of all sizes and shapes are now on the market. They also come in a variety of colors. My favorite is classic white or ivory in a clear glass vessel. Such an inexpensive but elegant way to create a romantic ambience for your reception!

3. Pinspot Lighting

Ever thought of illuminating your cake and centerpieces? This is known as pinspot lighting, #3 in our list. Think of how much you pay for these gorgeous creations. Then think of how they fade into the background when the lights are dimmed in the room! Using pinspot lighting, you can make them stand out and show their beauty all evening. You’ll notice most of the high end venues include pinspot lighting in their ceilings, but for any venue, you can bring in a professional lighting company to provide this.

4.  Twinkle Lights

Bride & Groom Photo with Cascading Bouquet

Photo by Casey Rose Photography

Coming in at #4… Twinkle lights litter Pinterest, right?! There’s a good reason for that. They can make nearly any item shine and look amazing! I’ve decorated trees with them, put them inside vases, bottles, jars, and cloches, and wrapped tables and columns with them! The only limit is your own imagination on this one. I particularly love wrapping posts or columns with them and adding drapery over it. Oh la la!

5. GOBOs


Taking the spot at #5 is GOBOs. Funny word for a not so funny decor element! Your lighting company or DJ can provide a variety of shapes and designs through which to shine light onto your dance floor. They can also create a custom shape for you. Most popular is the monogram. How special to have your new family monogram in the center of the dance floor or above the cake table!

Wedding Bubble Exit

Photo by Casey Rose Photography

6. Chandeliers 

Who doesn’t love a romantic chandelier in nearly any kind of space?! Number 6 adds instant class and elegance to your wedding, whether you use them under an arbor for the ceremony, in the ceiling of a tent, or over the dance floor!

7. Hanging CandlesGold Vase Elevated Centerpieces

That’s right, you can hang candles these days! I have the cutest little holders that just beg to be used anywhere and everywhere! I’ve used them on walls behind cake tables, on manzanita trees lining the ceremony aisle, and under pergolas for cocktail hour! They’re amazing and add a simple and gorgeous touch!

8. Uplighting

Your DJ is your ultimate source for uplighting, #8 on our list. And don’t think that means it’s only bright flashing dance lights. Continuous uplighting in a white or amber on the walls is elegant and classy around the perimeter of your reception room. Many venues are including these as well, which makes their rental packages so enticing!

9. String Lights

Reception Venue, Barn at Valhalla

Photo by Chris Harburg Photography

The #9 spot goes to a wide variety of string lights.  Some popular forms include xmas lights, market lights, fairy curtains, lighted garlands, and Edison lights. Many of these lights also can be found in nearly every color imaginable. String them around your tent, over your deck, over the dance floor, around the arbor, or anywhere you can imagine!

To see my work, visit the Poppy Belle Design Gallery. Interested in what I can do for your wedding? Contact me here!

KNS Tips: The Perfect Support For Your Perfect Day

Feature photo by Thirteenth Moon Photography. Knots ‘N Such is a Raleigh wedding/event planner & florist.

Here at PBD, we know the process of planning your wedding is magical. However, it can be stressful for you and your family without the right support system.  Knowing when and how to plan the perfect wedding is not an easy task for a bride, and this is the reason that you might opt to hire a wedding planner like myself. I am often asked by brides and their family, what are our options? What are the differences between  a wedding planner, a venue coordinator and a day-of coordinator? How does each help with the planning process and the day of your wedding? In this week’s blog, I will be discussing the different support options available to you and how these wedding professionals like myself…help with your big day. 

PBD shares picture of Bride & Groom Portrait at American Tobacco Campus

Photo By Thirteenth Moon Photography LLC

Wedding Planner

As a wedding planner I will help you plan each stage of your wedding, and will keep you on schedule as deadlines approach.  Ask questions. We’re here to guide and assist you. Experienced planners have a large network of trusted vendors in every category imaginable, have tips for where to splurge and where to save, and have planning tools that can save you tons of time! There may some additional benefits to hiring a planner who is also a designer. It makes perfect sense that hiring a vendor who can help in multiple categories is much less administration and management for you. For instance, I’m also an event & floral designer, so can make every detail of your wedding memorable, special, and beautiful.  

PBD shares picture of Bride & Groom at American Tobacco Campus

Photo By Thirteenth Moon Photography LLC

Venue Coordinator

A venue coordinator can be invaluable in helping make sure your special day goes according to plan. These professionals are there to ensure the venue, its staff, and their outlined responsibilities are handled expertly. Some venues, but not all,  have a venue coordinator on staff.  However, it is important to consider that a venue coordinator is not there to make sure your day-of schedule is followed. Details such as the  photographer being in place, that you have your bouquet in hand before you walk down the aisle, or that the correct music is played at your reception, is not among their responsibilities. These duties belong to your planner and day of coordinator.  


PBD shares picture of Ringbearers with Bowties at 21C Museum Hotel

Photo By Thirteenth Moon Photography LLC

Day of Coordinator

Last, but not least, you have the option of a day-of coordinator. A day-of coordinator is responsible for making sure that your wedding day goes perfectly.  They will make sure that all your vendors arrive and perform on time and ensure that each stage of your day goes according to plan; a day-of will also keep up with the members of your wedding party, the venue is set-up according to your wishes, and that everyone performs according to the schedule you have in place.  They are an invaluable resource.  However, they differ from a wedding planner in that they will not be with you during the whole process of planning your wedding.  They will not make sure your invitations go out on time, that all your vendors have been hired or that your dress has been altered correctly. He/she will come in at the end of the planning process to ensure all your wishes are carried out on day of.

Each of the above professionals offers a different set of services, and it is up to you to determine which will give you the most value for your situation.  Be sure to weigh the limits of their expertise, and always remember that you get what you pay for!  Interested in what I can do for your wedding? Contact me here, and to see examples of my work, visit the Poppy Belle Design Gallery.

A Raleigh Wedding/Event Planner Venue Spotlight: River Ridge Golf Club

Cover photo by Azul Photography. Knots ‘N Such is a Raleigh wedding planner & florist.

As a Raleigh Wedding/Event Planner, I know the importance of finding the perfect venue. The venue sets the tone, captures the theme, and frames the memories being made for any event. Each couple has a vision of their ideal wedding and finding the right space to make that dream a reality is very important. This week I would like to share a venue spotlight on River Ridge Golf Club located in Raleigh, NC. and an interview I did with Miranda E. Day, River Ridge’s Sales and Events Director. But first, mark your calendars for their open house on April 23rd from Noon – 3:00 PM. I’ll be there showing off some blooms to inspire you for your big day!

RRGC Open House - Raleigh Wedding Planner & Florist

Venue Location:

Surrounded by blue Carolina skies and sweeping green landscapes,  River Ridge Golf Club  is sure to offer an intimate stage for your love story and create memories that will last a lifetime.  When asked if River Ridge had both outdoor and indoor ceremony and reception sites available, Ms. Day commented, “River Ridge hosts both ceremonies and receptions. Typically, our events are outdoor only, but we can host events in our ballroom or ceremonies on our covered outdoor pavilion.” When asked about the maximum capacity, Ms. Day said, “Approximately 300 guests between our outdoor pavilion space and indoor ballroom or 215 located on our outdoor pavilion. We provide 150 chairs for reception and ceremony. Our ballroom is a gorgeous 10,000 square foot space. In the event of rain, if a couple chooses an outdoor ceremony, we can also accommodate a tent.” River Ridge is also ADA accessible with a ramp.

As a Raleigh Wedding/Event Planner and owner of Knots 'N Such Event Planning & Design, I understand how important finding the perfect venue is. River Ridge Golf Club offers a lovely outdoor space for ceremonies.

Beautiful outdoor ceremony at River Ridge Golf Club

Price of Venue:

When it comes to venue selection couples want to know how much a venue will cost and what is included in the fee. When asked this question, Miranda was very detailed and I just loved that. No couple wants hidden fees. Miranda shared with me that at River Ridge Golf Club, they do not charge a fee per guest. Instead, they base their charges on whether the couple is interested in the wedding ceremony only ($1200), a wedding reception only ($2800) or both ( $3200). Prices don’t vary based on day of the week or time. This is great for couples that wish to have a weekend wedding. Most locations charge more for a weekend date.

What’s Included:

When asked what the price included, Ms. Day commented, “Our rental fee includes the use of  the outdoor pavilion and indoor ballroom, use of our indoor clubhouse, ceremony chairs as well as reception tables and chairs for 150 guests, 48 hours use of storage space, access to a certified wedding planner to meet with you and discuss your visions of your special day, 10-hour day of event coordination from our events staff, flexibility to decorate our neutral space to reflect your personal taste, complimentary one hour for rehearsal, and complimentary use of venue for bridal portraits before your event. Staff will also help transition from ceremony to reception.”

As a Raleigh Wedding/Event Planner and owner of Knots 'N Such Event Planning & Design, I understand how important finding the perfect venue is. River Ridge Golf Club offers a beautiful reception area.

River Ridge Reception

The fee also includes the use of (15) 72” round tables that can accommodate up to 10 guests each, (150) white resin reception chairs, (150) white ceremony chairs, (10) 8 ft. banquet tables, (5) 30” tall cocktail tables,(1) 36” round cake table, (1) 48” sweetheart table for bride and groom,  and (2) 6′ banquet tables. There is no additional charges for water, electrical, or parking. Parking is ample and there is no need to rent additional rest rooms.

Set Up and Decoration:

At River Ridge Golf Club, you can be in the venue at 7:00 am if you’d like to get ready onsite. Club staff will arrive between 12:00 pm and 1:00 pm. If you would like staff to be on the premise early to help with additional setup, there is an additional fee. All tables and chairs will be setup the day before so your vendor setup can begin at 7:00 am.

When asked if there are there restrictions to the space with decorating, Ms. Day replied,”Our elegant neutral spaces can be decorated with your personal style any way you like. However, you will want to have centerpieces with a heavy base because the pavilion is elevated and there is always a slight breeze blowing through. Candles should be sheltered from the wind as well. Also, we ask that you do not put holes into walls and ceilings and use command hooks instead.” Occasionally, River Ridge will host multiple weddings on the same weekend. It can affect tent rental pick up and drop off but it will not affect rehearsal. Staff will coordinate these times.


River Ridge Golf Club does not have an in-house caterer. They do, however, have a preferred vendor and caterer list you can choose from. If a couple prefers to use someone outside of that list… it is welcomed as long as the caterer or vendor is approved by Miranda. There is no fee for using your own vendors.  The next questions are always asked by couples.  What is the alcohol policy? And what kind of bar options are offered? Miranda is happy to provide insight. River Ridge has both Beer & Wine Licenses and all beer and wine must be purchased through the Club. There are several options for you to choose from that will suit your personal preference best and accommodate your budget.

As a Raleigh Wedding/Event Planner and owner of Knots 'N Such Event Planning & Design, I understand how important finding the perfect venue is. River Ridge Golf Club offers beautiful landscapes for breathtaking photography.

Enchanting Photography possibilities at River Ridge

Open Bar:

With our open bar option, we invoice based on consumption. While other venues charge per person, we charge per drink, so clients only pay for what is used. The prices listed below are the fees for the open bar option:

  • $3.00/ domestic beer
  • $4.00/ import beer
  • $4.00/specialty beer
  • $5.00/ glass of wine
  • $20 per hour for bartender fee + hour clean up/set up
  • 20% gratuity added to all beverages sold



*According to the NC Consumer Tax Law, there will be an Alcoholic Beverage Tax charged for all beer and wine consumed.

Open Bar with Limits:

If you choose to forego the open bar option, you have the choice to control consumption and spending by setting a monetary limit or by using a ticket system.

  •  Monetary Limit: Set a limit for how much you want to spend on alcohol at your event. *This set price does not include tax, bartender fee or gratuity.
  •  Ticket System: The preferred and equitable option of the two, open bar with ticket limit ensures that every guest can enjoy complimentary drinks, without breaking your budget. Each guest is allotted a certain number of tickets at your discretion (usually attached to the programs or name cards) When guests have used all their allotted tickets, they can purchase alcohol from the bar with cash.*This set price does not include tax, bartender fee or gratuity.

Cash Bar:

Our cash bar option is great for couples on a budget. Your guest will pay for their own drinks. The only charge you are responsible for is the bartender fee, which is $20/hour + clean up/set up.

Liquor Bar:

Liquor is an option! You must obtain a 24-hour special occasional alcohol permit from ABC. Once you are granted your permit, you will be allowed to bring in your own liquor and mixers and our bartenders will make the drinks for your guests. There is an additional corkage fee of $3 per person that will be added to your final invoice.

As a Raleigh Wedding/Event Planner and owner of Knots 'N Such Event Planning & Design, I understand how important finding the perfect venue is. River Ridge Golf Club offers wonderful  space for entertaining.

Entertaining spaces at River Ridge


Next Ms. Day and I discussed entertainment… after all…what’s a wedding and reception without music? Bands or DJs are welcome and must provide their own equipment. All noise and guests must be packed up and out of the venue by 11:00 pm. to respect noise ordinances. Miranda added that there are no photo or video restrictions or fees, but guest are at their own risk on the golf course.


Miranda Day is  your point of contact at River Ridge Golf Club; She will be there for the 10-hours of day-of coordination. Accommodating and friendly, you’ll love working with her! I’m very excited to provide floral decor for their clients! For more information or to view the River Ridge Golf Club gallery click here .

To see the work of other professionals I love, visit the Poppy Belle Design Gallery. Interested in what I can do for your wedding? Contact me here!

Inspiration from a Raleigh Wedding/Event Planner: Unique Down to the Letter

Feature photo by Renee Sprink. Knots ‘N Such is a Raleigh wedding/event planner & florist.

I just love when clients seek unique personal touches for their wedding day – something whimsical and inspired by their love story. However, sometimes couples need a creative planner & designer help them think outside the box! For this week’s blog, we’re talking about ways to incorporate the art of calligraphy into your wedding day…in uncommon ways…above and beyond the invitation! We spoke with Jessica Yee, owner of The Oblique Pen Calligraphy and Engraving Studio, about things she’s lettered and things she wants to letter!

Common uses of Calligraphy:

Inspiration from a Raleigh Wedding/Event Planner: Creative Calligraphy Uses for Your Wedding

Photography by Renee Sprink

First, let’s review some common uses of calligraphy. Calligraphy is often used in the creation of invitations, envelopes, place cards, menus, programs, and wedding signage (chalkboards and mirrors). Compared to digital designs of these wedding must haves, the use of hand lettering adds a level of elegance and personal branding. There are so many different types of fonts and styles when choosing and using calligraphy for your staple pieces. In the right hands, pen and ink can create powerful emotion. A skilled calligrapher can help you choose the perfect script and style for your story. As for all your wedding vendors, hire experience! Jessica has 25+ years of that, so has a huge library of lettering styles to share with clients.

Unique Ways to Use Calligraphy:

The reason I love Jess? She gets giddy with excitement when she has a chance to create something bold and DIFFERENT! Often brides want a one of a kind experience for their wedding, but can’t think of how to accomplish that. Taking inspo from Angelina Jolie, why not letter your wedding gown? Jessica had the opportunity to do this recently for a styled shoot with one of the best local photographers in the Triangle. The model’s gown was covered in romantic French quotes about love and marriage in Jessica’s distinctive lettering style. Create a family heirloom that can be handed down for generations! (More to come from that shoot, but for now it’s under wraps!)

Please Be Seated Mirror

Photo Provided by Client

When it comes to choosing the item or items that you’d like to enhance with calligraphy, start thinking of every item that will be a part of the wedding. Through either ink or engraving, the sky is the limit when it comes to surfaces that Jess can letter. Back in the day, when the post office allowed unusual items to be mailed, Jess lettered wooden spoons for save-the-dates. So cool, right? So think about EVERY item… Chargers? Check. Sea shell escort cards? Check. Metal compass place cards for a travel themed wedding? Check. Card boxes? Check. People? Check. Wait, what?!!! Yes… even people. Jessica has hand lettered inspirational friendship quotes on bridesmaids. Are you the go big or go home type? Letter their arms or backs. Want something simpler? Have Jessica letter on a bracelet or necklace. A temp tattoo for the big day!


Calligraphy Gifts:

Inspiration from a Raleigh Wedding/Event Planner: Creative Calligraphy Uses for Your Wedding

Photo by Renee Sprink

Looking for gift ideas for the wedding party? Sure you can order robes for your bridesmaids, but why not take it a step further and let Jess letter them?And for the guys? Present them with engraved items like a bottle of scotch or cigar box. And you can always keep the gifts to yourselves, after all, you’re the guests of honor? So how about engraved champagne flutes, wine carafe, or cake serving set In the hands of a skilled calligrapher, nearly any object can go from ordinary to extraordinary.


Interested in Calligraphy:

If you are interested in hiring a calligrapher to make your special day even more so, it is important to remember to book early. Talk to your chosen calligrapher about your needs and wants. And of course, Jess & I can help you come up with lots more ideas!
Jessica is just one of the talented vendors I know… To see the work of other professionals I love, visit the Poppy Belle Design Gallery. Interested in what I can do for your wedding? Contact me here!

Tips from a Raleigh Wedding Planner: Other Ways to Use a Wedding Planner

Feature photo by Bowtie Collaborative Photography. Knots ‘N Such is a Raleigh wedding planner and florist.

Wedding planners are certainly the experts at planning weddings, but notice my company name says “Event Planning”. Did you know that wedding planners can also plan other event types? It’s my job to ensure that the theme, location, decor, catering, and connections are spot on for the wedding day. However, there is so much focus on the wedding itself, that the events before and after the wedding, like the engagement party and honeymoon, are often overlooked in the planning stages and can cause a couple unneeded frustration. These slightly less significant occasions can become quite overwhelming and although family and friends may try to step up and help with these events, the couple’s voice often gets lost and relationships can become strained in the process. But don’t worry – a wedding planner is just the perfect solution! Here’s how….


The Engagement Party:

Raleigh Wedding Planner & Florist

Photo by Riley McLean Weddings

Congratulations!!!! You’re engaged and I know you can’t wait to share it with others. This event kicks off the first of many wedding festivities. The engagement party is the declaration of your intent to wed and the chance to share that wonderful news with friends and family. Venue, menu, catering, guest list, invitations, and theme are just a few of the components that go into an engagement party. Sound familiar? These components are not that different than what goes into the actual wedding. They are just on a much smaller scale.  


A wedding planner can help set the mood of the evening, while providing valuable resources and guidance. Have you seen the Rolodex of a wedding planner?! We have so many contacts for venues, caterers, invitation professionals, photographers, and much more. Our networks are huge!!! There is so much leg work that goes into an event like this and it can often get overwhelming for the couple, stealing moments of joy that should have been spent in celebration, rather than aggravation. And wedding planners know how to balance; this event is designed to celebrate your engagement, not upstage your wedding.


The Rehearsal Dinner:

Beautiful Table Set Up

Photo by Riley McLean Weddings

The engagement party was a great success. And now the rehearsal dinner needs the same tender love and care as the other festivities. Here once again, enters your secret weapon and one of your greatest allies…The Wedding Planner. The wedding planner can provide options for the location and venue, help with the guest list, invites, the menu, possible theme and a degree of coordination if needed. Also,  depending on the planner, the creation of personalized decor to elevate and add enchantment to the event. For instance, I’m also a floral designer. So I bring that to the table.


Beautiful Floral Head Piece

Photo by Danell Beede Photography

Now for this next topic you may be asking yourself how a wedding planner could assist in the planning and execution of the bachelor and bachelorette party. After all, these are events traditionally that are the responsibility of the Maid of Honor and Best Man. BUT a professional in my field can, in fact, help with these two very important rites of passage. First, most wedding planners have travel specialists in pocket. I can help with the necessary connections to plan and book destinations. I can also make custom pieces for the bride to wear. We have all seen the crowns and sashes that marks the bride-to-be. Why be cliche or generic when you are far from it? I can create floral head pieces to wear the night of and make souvenir bouquets to carry instead. I can also create floral pieces for guests to wear and help with favors of appreciation for both the groom and bride’s wedding party and guests.


The Honeymoon:

Raleigh Wedding Planner & Florist

Photo by Photographs by Stephanie

With the close of your ceremony, comes the last part of an incredible journey…the honeymoon. Your wedding planner has been with you each step of the way and it would be a shame to not use his or her expertise here as well. Think of a wedding planner as an umbrella – we cover any and all wedding festivities! Wedding planners usually have travel specialists they trust and work with. They often have the 411 on what restaurants, services, and attractions are “must do’s” in an area; if they do not, they are resourceful and can pull contacts to find out the information. A wedding planner can also help with passports, luggage, attire, and personalized items often sought after by couples for the honeymoon.

Anniversary Parties:

Photography by Knots ‘N Such Event Planning & Design













Whether it’s your first, 10th, 25th, 50th or beyond, an anniversary is an amazing opportunity to celebrate the long lasting love between two people and reflect on memories made. Some couples want a small intimate gathering for just family and friends, while others have a grander celebration in mind.  Perhaps you want a vow renewal or re-commitment ceremony…. What about a recreation of key elements from your wedding day?  Just recently I had the honor of recreating a bridal bouquet for one of my brides are on her first anniversary. Like other events… guest list, venue, catering, and decor also go hand and hand when planning an anniversary party. As a wedding planner my business is love and regardless of the milestone, I can help do it beautifully


A wedding planner is versatile and skilled.  Unfortunately, most couples don’t include them when planning the other events that come before or after the wedding.  That way, from start to finish, your events are memorable, and you can focus more on the celebration, rather than having any stress and anxiety!


To see examples of my design work and for inspiration, please visit the Poppy Belle Design Gallery. Interested in what I can do for your wedding? Contact me here!

Groom and Groomsmen Attire – Tips from a Raleigh Wedding Planner

Feature photo by Riley McLean Weddings. Knots ‘N Such is a Raleigh area wedding planner & florist.

I’ve seen my fair share of brightly colored wedding attire over the years and I am not just speaking of the bridesmaids. Brightly colored vests among the groom and groomsmen seems to linger and always takes me back to my teen years when my older brother work a hot pink cumber-bun and bow tie with his gray tux. However,  I am here to assure you that there is nothing wrong with going classic instead. In fact, classic style is making a much needed come back.  A simple 2 or 3-piece suit paired with a neutral button up is simple and elegant….dashing even. If you desire color, there are ways to incorporate flourishes without going over the top.  The bride and groom’s attire should complement each other, as should the groomsmen and bridesmaids. The wedding party is a reflection of the happy couple, but this does not mean that the men must all match and look uniform; on the contrary, having suits that all match could be seen staged and not as natural. Here are some tips from a Raleigh wedding planner to consider when choosing the guys’ attire. 


Raleigh Wedding Planner & Florist

Les Atkins Photography

The most common reason to use color among the men of the wedding party is the style and wedding color palette. However, there are other ways to bring pops of that desired color into the attire without sacrificing that classic look and comfort. Consider a colorful boutonniere, tie, pocket square or cuff-links. These accessories can add just enough flare to draw the eye and pull the whole look together.

 When and Where:

McCardell Photography

Will the wedding be outdoor or in? What season will you choose for your big day? What climate is common for that time of year? These are important details to consider when choosing the Groom and Groomsmen’s attire as well. For instance, as a Raleigh wedding planner, I have planned my share of  spring weddings in  North Carolina. The weather is warm and the couple usually wants an outdoor ceremony to mark the season and the occasion. A vest may add an unnecessary layer in the NC heat. So choose light weight and light colors for warmer months. Choose dark and rich items for cooler months. Keep in mind… More often than not, the bride has a change of attire as the night goes on, and the groom will most likely take off his jacket to be more comfortable. And that’s okay once the I do’s are over!


Raleigh Wedding Planner & Florist

Jocelyn & Ryan Photography

Last, but not least, let’s talk about personality. We all know about the mismatched bridesmaid dress trend in recent years – and I’m a fan! In a similar vein… If the groom and groomsmen wore matching suits, their personality wouldn’t shine through nearly as bright. They lose their individuality. Now, no one is saying that these fine gentlemen should upstage the bride. However, these men were chosen for a reason. It would be a shame to take away the personal touches that put them in this position in the first place. Let’s say they all wore a charcoal or navy colored suit, not matching… but similar.  You can always add personalized details to each that represents who they are. If all of their suits did not match perfectly, and the colors were more simple and regal, the appearance of the wedding party will appear more relaxed, at ease, thus providing the perfect atmosphere  and the potential for some amazing wedding pictures.

A wedding is more than just being flashy and making everything memorable.  A wedding is a compromise, the beginning of a lifelong agreement to always talk things out, no matter how difficult.  Agreeing on wedding attire is a good place to start, especially when going for a timeless look that will still look good fifty years from now.

To see examples of my design work and for inspiration, please visit the Poppy Belle Design Gallery to see examples of groom and groomsmen attire. Interested in what I can do for your wedding? Contact me here!

Wedding Flowers – Tips from a Raleigh Wedding Planner

Feature photo by Photographs by Stephanie. Knots ‘N Such is a Raleigh wedding planner & florist.

Having her own unique personality and flare is important to nearly every bride… The perfect venue, fairy tale – like attire, a towering cake… And what else? That’s right…the flowers!  From bouquets to the wedding cake, flowers play an integral role.

Brides dream of the floral decor that will tie everything beautifully together and add embellishments that will leave guests in awe. But after doing research or meeting with the first florist, couples are often in disbelief about the cost associated with wedding flowers. Why are they so expensive?! Let me just say that when I first got into the design business years ago, I too had sticker shock! So in the interest of education, let me share with you what I’ve learned…

Raleigh Wedding Planner & Florist

Photo by Chris Harburg Photography

Let’s Talk Season:

Flowers are seasonal and often subject to climate and environmental factors. What if one of my brides is getting married in the fall, but has her heart set on peonies, which only blooms in the US in spring? I have to shop elsewhere so her vision is realized. That often means going beyond local suppliers and purchasing from around the United States or even importing from another country.

Flowers are delicate and must be handled very carefully when delivering. So when shipped from a distant location, extra cost is needed to make sure that the flowers not only arrive in time, but in pristine condition. If flowers arrive bruised, wilted, or damaged, they are shipped back, which elevates the price as well. Often the flowers go through many hands before they reach your florist, and each of those sets of hands are trying to feed their family! 



Raleigh Wedding Planner & Florist

Photo by Ultimate Images

Let’s Talk Size:

Depending on the size of the bouquet, the number of flowers needed can become quite large. The more flowers used and the more selective the bride, the higher the cost. Larger blooms like Hydrangea cost more. The more exotic the floral (like calla lilies, peonies, orchids) or even the classics (like garden roses) can cost more as well.  Then there is quality. I only use the very best because my brides deserve the very best. So if you find yourself held prisoner by an unyielding budget but have your heart set on a particular flower, consider using that bloom as a statement focal bloom but pair it with smaller, simpler blooms to add texture and contrast. I would be happy to help you come up with the perfect recipe!


Raleigh Wedding Planner & Florist

Photo by Photographs by Stephanie

Let’s Talk Supply:

Trends influence price. A popular item is sold at a higher retail because demand is high. Well….this same pricing system happens with flowers believe it or not. For example, a Patone color is announced each year. This year it is Greenery.  Brides plan their theme and colors to incorporate that popular trend into their wedding day.

Therefore, flowers that fit this trend are highly sought after; often brides think alike. Supplies domestically decrease of a particular bloom, forcing florists to seek supplies in different locations. Costs just went up.  But where there is a will there is a way! As a Raleigh wedding florist, I have years of experience in finding unique alternatives.


Raleigh Wedding Planner & Florist

Photo by Mad Photography

Let’s Talk Design:

Flowers for bouquets and arrangements start their journey as simple seeds that blossom and bloom as they are nurtured and cared for. Like any great piece art, it takes time and the best of conditions to get flowers wedding ready. 

Poppy Belle Design has the highest standards when providing our couples with a variety of choices. I shop locally as well outsource to other states and countries when needed to assure my brides get the floral flourishes.

Each flower is cut, cleaned, fed, hydrated, and prepped before becoming part of the design. They are handled with care and delicacy, and individually placed to create an extraordinary piece. This takes skills that have been studied, practiced, honed, and perfected for years. And we spend many hours working on your wedding – we work with a perishable product so it all has to be done in the few days just before your wedding. So this often means long hours on our feet! Floral designers are artists with tremendous knowledge of not only the blooms, but of mechanics and craftsmanship that assures your blooms still look great at the end of the wedding night. 

There are great costs associated with being a florist – coolers, studios, showrooms, delivery vans, staff, contractors, buckets, ribbon, flower food, the list goes on and on. And have you  noticed that every wedding on a florist’s website has different containers? It’s quite expensive to store a fabulous inventory of containers so that our couples have a beautiful selection to choose from. In the end, we just want to make our clients happy and to remain in business doing what we love. So we must charge a fee to cover all these bases. And remember, the flowers in your wedding photos last FOREVER so make them special!

To see examples of my designs and for inspiration, please visit the Poppy Belle Design Gallery. Interested in what I can do for your wedding? Contact me here!