Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Day Trips - Flying Dog Brewery

Maryland is in the perfect location when it comes to day trips.  It’s small enough to drive through in a few hours and is nestled between very charismatic cities including Philadelphia and Washington D.C..We have beautiful beaches in one direction and majestic mountains in the other.  It's safe to say that it's pretty difficult to get restless around these parts.

Frederick, Maryland makes for a fantastic weekend getaway in itself.  The city houses a number of antique shops, delectable restaurants and countless outdoor attractions fit for people of all ages.  It also has a number of wineries and breweries fit for a more mature audience.  A great place to entertain guests from out of town or incorporate into a Bachelor's weekend is the Flying Dog Brewery.

Flying Dog Brewery was created after a series of events involving a few weary hikers, strong alcohol, and a strange vision somewhere in the Himalayan Mountains.  George Stranahan, the man who initiated the journey was so inspired that he decided to open a brew pub in Aspen, CO in 1990.  I'll leave the rest of the story for one of the brewery's charismatic factory tour guides.

In the early 1990's Flying Dog moved from a small brewery in Denver to it's current state-of-the-art brewing facility located in Frederick, MD.  Ever since it was founded, the company has stayed true to it's philosophy, making great beer and not letting anyone stand in it's way.  The company has created an extensive selection of signature craft brews ranging from Pale Ales to coffee based stouts.  The brand has developed a large following of devoted drinkers.  Another thing the company is know for are the cheeky names given to each draft.  Famed illustrator, Ralph Steadman has developed a long standing relationship with the company, designing labels for each and every draft produced in the factory.

The Factory Tour is a fantastic opportunity in taste-testing and a great way to learn about the art of brewing beer.  Upon paying the $5 entry fee you are given six wooden tokens and a Flying Dog tasting glass.  Visitors are encouraged to taste as many different beers as possible.  Each token is worth one refill and needless to say, it might be best to stay in Frederick for the night  The factory guides are funny, informative, and highly entertaining.  Once the tour is over guests are taken to the factory bar where the real fun begins.  Reservations can be made on the Flying Dog Website, however be fore-warned it's best to book in advance.  Weekend tours fill especially fast, but for something this unique it's worth the wait.  

Monday, January 30, 2012

Pre-Wedding Yoga With Sarah Cooke

"I started my love affair with yoga about seven years ago.

It's hard to say what I love most about yoga; there are so many things! But if I had to choose just one, I'd say that the best part is the relationship I've developed with myself through the practice. It's led to so much physical, mental and spiritual growth.

I started working with bridal parties a few years ago. The experiences have been so rewarding, both for the bride and for me. A wedding can be such an intimate, love-filled event, so to be a part of that is really an honor. And for the bride, starting the day off with some physical movement, focus and some time just for herself before the whirlwind begins, has proven to be invaluable. It sets the stage to move through the day with intention.

Arranging pre-wedding yoga is pretty simple. Just pick the date, the time and we can work out a venue. Often the brides like to hold the class at their hotel or a nice outdoor spot, depending on the season. I bring all of the mats and anything else we might need, even music if that's requested. We can discuss how vigorous or relaxed the class should be; if there's anything you want to do in the practice; the class can be as specific as you like."

-Sarah Cooke is a full-time yoga instructor and teaches multiple classes weekly at Charm City YogaCharm City Yoga currently has six locations in and around the Baltimore area.  They also offer private sessions with some of the areas best teachers, including Sarah.  For more information check out their website.  All of the images accompanying this post are from CCY's website and were taken by Eddie Winter.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Curvaceous Couture

People come in all shapes and sizes. No matter if you are tall or short, thin or curvy, you deserve the wedding dress of your dreams. Shopping for your wedding dress should be a wonderful bonding experience filled with emotion and memories.  Most importantly the bride should find that one dress she just can't live without.  However, finding that perfect dress has become quite the daunting task for many of today's brides. 
That was the case for Yukia Walker.  After visiting a number of prominent boutiques, Walker found herself in a conundrum.   She was completely dissapointed with the selection of dresses available in her size.  Though many companies make it possible to custom order dresses of all sizes, dress salons generally carry a very limited range when it comes to sample sizes.  It is impossible to tell how a dress will look without trying it on.  The idea of purchasing such an important garment without reassurence is terrifying. 
Yukia Walker founded Curvaceous Couture after having an upsetting experience finding a wedding dress.  She wanted to help women that have endured a similar situation.  Her specialty bridal boutique is located in Columbia, Maryland and has dressed brides from all over the world.  By carrying hundreds of stunning gowns from some of the biggest names in the business including Reem Acra and Alfred Sung, Walker is truly helping make gown shopping an incredible experience for everyone.  Yukia Walker is an inspiration for anyone who has ever struggled in their quest for the perfect dress.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012


Here it is: the hot colors for Spring 2012. Will we see these at your wedding?

Monday, January 23, 2012

Custom Chuck Taylors

Chuck Taylor's have become a staple for wedding parties of all types.  From brides who need a break from their towering heals, to ring-bearers who are barely old enough to walk, Chuck Taylor's have covered a lot of feet.  What's great about Converse's most famous shoe is how versitile they are.  They come in a myriad of color combinations and can be customized to say just about anything.  The adorable image above is by Danielle Aquiline Photography and came from The Last Detail.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Mix-matched Bridesmaids

A cute and quirky trend appearing more and more in weddings is diversity in the selection of dresses worn by the bridal party.  It used to be that every person involved had some variation of the same dress.   More frequently bridesmaids are able to pick out their very own gowns.  Generally the bride picks out a specific color scheme, and possibly a genre of dress.  Then the bridesmaids find the dress that would best suit them.  There have been so many cases of the unfortunate bridesmaid dress, that in this day and age it's only fair to let such an important part of the wedding have some say in what they wear.  Brands like J. Crew and Watter's offer a wide range of styles within the same hue.  By using different types of dresses, brides provide bridesmaids with the opportunity to show a little more personality.  It can also be a helpful tactic when it comes to theme weddings.  Think of all the styles that could be used for a Mad Men inspired wedding.
The fantastic image above by Aaron Shintaku came from Inspired by This, a wedding blog by Leila Khalil.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Doloris Petunia

Wedding accessories are supposed to be special and that's why custom jewelry designer Courtney Prince has the right idea.  There is nothing that complements a simple gown like an intricate sparkling necklace.  Doloris Petunia by Courtney Prince is a fabulous line of jewelry and hair accessories perfect for any blushing bride.  Etsy recently did a featured piece on the designer which is absolutely worth a read.  The stunning image above is from the Doloris Petunia Etsy Page where that beautiful headpiece can also be found.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Bridal Show on The Water

The Chesapeake Bay Beach Club in Stevensville, Maryland is not only a wonderful place for a wedding, but the talented folks there also produce one of the best bridal shows in the state. On Saturday, January 7th, the annual show will take place from noon-5:00 pm. Advance purchase tickets are $ 15.00 and well worth the entrance fee. There will be a great line-up of area vendors such as bridal salons, decor experts, deejays and wedding cake bakers all there to talk with you about your wedding. In addition, the Beach Club's culinary team will entice you with samples from their 2012 menus. Definitely worth the trip across the bridge.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Happy 2012!

To all our brides and grooms getting married in 2012, best wishes for an exciting, fun and happy year. And sending good thoughts for a healthy and fabulous new year to all our friends, families and acquaintances. Looking forward to a wonderful 366 days in 2012!