October 23rd Bridal Showcase

Hi brides-to-be! I'm so excited to announce that Laurel & Elm will be participating in a boutique bridal event next month with some of the best Philly wedding vendors around! 

On October 23rd from 12 to 4 PM, I'll be giving out tips and information about our planning packages (along with some other goodies!) with our friendors at L. Priori Jewelry's new studio at 16th and Walnut! 

Event highlights include:

  • BHLDN showcasing their newest bridal styles
  • L. Priori x Trousseau Style bridal jewelry line introduction
  • Weckerly's delicious ice cream sandwiches to sample
  • Custom makeup samples from Shimmer and Spice
  • Wedding day hair consultation from Occasions by Diana
  • Custom cocktails from 13th Street Cocktails
  • Live music from the Friends with Benefits Band

... and more from Papertree Studio, Whipped Bakeshop, Laurel & Elm, Ever Laser, Maria Mack, Carly is Inspired and Encrit en Bleu! 

Tickets are $15 in advance and $20 at the door. Click HERE to purchase your tickets early! 

We can't wait to see you!

Labor Day Design Discounts!

This post is for those couples who are currently overwhelmed by the world of Pinterest and are going in a million different directions with the overall look of their wedding day... let us help you! From today until Labor Day (which is already next Monday!), Laurel & Elm is offering 10% off of our styling + design package if booked within the next week! 

There are SO many components that go into creating a completely cohesive event, so the style proposals we present you with are often over 20 pages long, touching on every aspect of your wedding that can be seen and cherished forever in your photographs. Check out a few photos below from the end results of a handful of our favorite design projects!

Copper + merlot fall vineyard wedding

Featured on Wedding Chicks

Photos by Tina Jay Photography

Photos by Tina Jay Photography

mixed metal woodsy winter wedding

Featured on Style Me Pretty

Photos by Brianna Wilbur Photography

Photos by Brianna Wilbur Photography

romantic jewel-toned wedding

Featured on Style Me Pretty

Photos by Brianna Wilbur Photography

Photos by Brianna Wilbur Photography

bright + modern vow renewal

Featured on Style Me Pretty, Ruffled and ModWedding

Photos by Tina Jay Photography

Photos by Tina Jay Photography

Here's just some of what the styling + design package includes:

  • Conceptual development and complete event design including ceremony, cocktail hour and reception
  • A detailed design proposal including theme, colors, style and completely customized wedding design ideas for your event from start to finish
  • Vendor recommendations within your style and budget
  • Sourcing and ordering of all all event decor to be styled at your event
  • Management of vendor relationships for design-related vendors 
  • A detailed set-up timeline
  • DIY project planning and assembly
  • Styling on site before your event and cleaning up afterwards
  • A venue walk-through at your ceremony and reception sites
  • Unlimited phone and email communication as always!

Head on over to the Contact page before this week is over and tell me about yourself for all the details and pricing! I can't wait to meet you! 

5 Sparkler Exit Tips for Your Big Send Off!

With Fourth of July just behind us, I thought I'd share my 5 expert tips for those of you thinking of doing a sparkler exit at your wedding! 


With all of the budget planning that goes into making a wedding beautiful, it's so easy to look for little ways to save money that aren't obvious to your guests. This is NOT the time to do that.

Different than the Fourth of July sparklers you are probably used to, wedding sparklers are usually sold in 3 different sizes - somewhere around 12 inches, 24 inches and 36 inches. The 12 inch sparklers are by FAR the cheapest and initially the most appealing however sparklers burn at a rate of 1 foot per minute - so 3 minutes total for even the longest sparkler. Unless you have an extremely small, intimate wedding, you're going to need every second you can get to have all of those sparklers lit and guests lined up and ready to go!

I always suggest the 36 inch sparkers for my clients. To create that Pinterest picture you've seen time and time again, the sparklers need to be somewhat close to the newlyweds. The 36" sparklers allow both the guest and the happy couple to be a safe distance from the fire in addition to that extra time it allows for more photos!

venue agreement

As you can imagine, there are venues don't feel 100% comfortable with guests who have been drinking for hours waving around sticks with fire on the end of them. Who could blame them? 

Before you buy anything, make sure to check your venue guidelines on open flames and ask which areas of the venue (if any) you can have your grand exit! Some venues located within or close to a forrest or another highly flammable area might not permit this at all, unfortunately! 

Photo by Autumn Kern Photography

Photo by Autumn Kern Photography


This is a HUGE photo opportunity! As soon as you know you'd like to have a sparkler exit, tell your photographer. Your photography contract outlines exactly how many hours of service your photo package includes, so you'll either want to adjust that timeframe with them so that they are there until the very end or preferably add additional hours so that they don't miss any of your getting ready details! This also allows your photographer to scope out the venue for the best spot to exit!

Photo by Autumn Kern Photography

Photo by Autumn Kern Photography

let your guests know!

To create that exit you've envisioned, you want to make sure as many of your guests as possible are there at the very end of your wedding! Some of your older guests, especially, who might otherwise leave a little earlier might decide to stick around if they know how important this is to you! A sign displayed at the reception AND a little timeline in their welcome bag never hurts so that your guests can plan their transportation accordingly! 

Photo by Autumn Kern Photography

Photo by Autumn Kern Photography

Photo by Tina Jay Photography

Photo by Tina Jay Photography

pack the supplies

This is the most important. Not having the right materials to execute this can cause huge problems! I usually suggest bringing along at least 1 lighter for every 20 guests - we pack a bunch with us too to help out! Check out Eric, my right hand husband/helper lighting 3 at a time! We take this seriously ;) 

Photo by Autumn Kern Photography

Photo by Autumn Kern Photography

The sparklers actually do a better job of lighting themselves from other sparklers than they do catching fire from matches, so designating a person (or hiring a wedding planner!) to be there to communicate this to your guests once they've got a few going can really help to speed the process along! 

One of the cutest sparkler packaging I've seen is from For Your Party. They sell these adorable sparkler sleeves with matches attached and allow you to customize your information, wedding font and colors to match! Just slip a sparkler in the slots at the top and bottom of the sleeve and everyone is informed and supplied! 


This cute little tag gives everyone with a sparkler an immediate way to light their sparkler and be ready for you! 

Last but certainly not least, have multiple water stations located a good distance apart from each other for your guests to put their sparklers out after you leave! Placing these in the general direction of the parking lot allows for your guests to give each other room so that nobody is turning around and surprising anyone! I usually suggest a metal pail of some sort so as not to create another fire with a plastic container of water. 

Keeping these tips in mind as you plan your grand exit can save you a lot of stress in the long run and allow you to achieve those memorable photos you've been wanting! 

Southern Destination Wedding - Kristi & Tom

Today I’m sharing Kristi and Tom’s classic, southern wedding! Kristi and Tom were married in May of 2015 but sometimes you have to keep the best things a secret for a while! It totally paid off because their wedding was just published in Alabama Weddings Magazine’s 15th Anniversary Edition which came out on January 1st! (Click here to read more about the feature!)

This wedding was Laurel & Elm’s first destination wedding and it was so much fun to do something different!  Kristi and Tom met in their high school gym class about 10 years ago, so this wedding was long awaited by the many people who traveled down from Philly to see them finally tie the knot in the south!

On top of all of the beautiful details, Kristi and Tom’s wedding day had the BEST weather for an outdoor wedding. As you can imagine, even in May, Alabama can get HOT. Their wedding day was a “cold” day in Alabama which means comfortable for Philadelphians :)

I’m going to walk you all through the day because there are just too many details not to talk about! A special thank you to Green Tree Photography for capturing their day so beautifully in all of these photos!


Even though the majority of the wedding was outdoors – the inside of Anderson Gail Farms had some of the most beautiful, classic details that made for a PERFECT backdrop for detail shots – my favorite :)

I just loved how these invitations turned out – Minted did such a nice job and worked through rounds of custom changes with us so that the invitations were exactly as we had planned! 

Kristi's Maggie Sottero gown was perfect for her. Pair that with Tom's black tux and you've got yourself a classy affair! 

Kristi and Tom decided to have a First Look, which I strongly suggest for every couple still on the fence about this. The irony of your wedding day is that on a day that’s all about the two of you, you will barely have any alone time together. Having a First Look allows you to spend some time together before all of your guests are pulling you in different directions AND it allows you more time for photos! 

After their first look, all of the guests arrived for the ceremony! Two of my favorite details of the day were this Guestbook Globe (Guestglobe?) and these custom hankerchiefs that served as ceremony programs that we designed to match Kristi & Tom’s invites! Southern hospitality at its finest.

Kristi and Tom had an intimate ceremony at the front of the house.

Afterwards, everyone headed in through the house and out back for cocktail hour, corn hole (with custom boards and bean bags of course) and a cigar bar.


These key escort cards are actually bottle openers too! Such a fun favor!

This was my first attempt at calligraphy! These place card stones added a personal touch while doubling as paperweights. Dinner outside was a little windy so this ended up being the perfect stylish solution to holding those napkins and personalized thank you cards down!

Tom actually made these custom corn hole boards for the wedding with their new monogram "L" on them! 

After lots of dancing, Kristi surprised Tom with fireworks to end their night! What a great gift!


I hope you all enjoyed their wedding as much as I did! Congratulations Kristi and Tom! Thank you for trusting us to design and plan your wedding!