real wedding:: destination nashville

Y'all, I don't know how a wedding could get any more quintessentially Nashville that this one! For Jersey-yielding Nashville-philes Lori & Donny, a destination occasion in their favorite city was exactly what the doctor ordered for their Memorial Day weekend wedding. With an almost 100% out-of-town guest list, we packed up some downtown hotels with guests and had a raring good time. 

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Lori's dress was downright perfect -- sweet and drapey with adorable Swiss dots and a thin gilded belt. She swapped out her pretty tan strappy heels for some cowboy boots for a couple of pictures to show off her inner country.

The Schermerhorn Symphony Center might be my favorite place to plan weddings here in Nashville! With its stunningly gorgeous gardens to the marble architecture, it is unfailingly a showstopper.

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Erin H. (the photographer du jour) traipsed all around downtown Nashville with Lori & Donny after the ceremony to catch some pics at their favorite Broadway haunts. A wedding dress in a honky-tonk? Absolutely fitting.

Dulce Desserts created several gorgeous and delicious cakes for the reception at Aerial. Everything from strawberry to chocolate chip was featured and gobbled up by happy guests.

Designer bride Lori created all of the signage and paper goods for her wedding. I adored these little menu-printed biscuit bags which adorned every place setting, as well as the escort card tags we tied onto mason jars for guests to drink from.

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The views from Aerial were absolutely spectacular! The whole reception felt like one giant outdoor al fresco dinner party -- guests were serenaded by the insanely talented Tootsie's house band as they looked out onto the rooftop views off Broadway. You've got to love the giant D + L Bright Event Productions hung up, too!

Planning | Kelly Dellinger Events
Florals | Fresh Nashville
Makeup & Hair | Parlour 3
Rentals | Music City Tents
Catering | Merchant's
Ceremony Trio | Lauren Conklin & Benjamin Johnson
Reception Band | Tootsie's House Band (Ben Shirk Band)
Wedding Cake  |  Dulce Desserts
Ceremony Venue | Schermerhorn Symphony Center
Reception Venue | Aerial

Photography | Erin H Photography
Lighting | Bright Event Productions

NEW service offered:: honeymoon suite decor

If you know my business very well, you'll know that I'm always open to out-of-the-box requests and custom packages that encompass services out of the bounds of my traditional wedding planning offerings. (No, that doesn't mean you pick and choose which line-items you don't want to pay for out of my packages and set your own pricing -- I'm talking creative projects that push the bounds of my imagination and satisfy your event needs!)

I had a groom send me one such request a little over a month ago: he wanted to surprise his bride-to-be with an elaborately decorated honeymoon hotel suite for their wedding night! I thought it was a sweet idea and something that would be really special for the two of them. We talked at length about how he loosely envisioned the whole affair, the couple's likes and dislikes, specific requests, and I wove all those little details together to create something absolutely lovely for them.

It was such a great experience I've decided to expand my traditional services to now include honeymoon suite design and decorating! Please shoot me an email if you're interested in kicking up your hotel suite a few notches in the romance department:) I'm happy to create a custom package for you! 

Check out pictures from D.W. & Hannah's honeymoon suite (at the Hutton Hotel in downtown Nashville), taken by the talented Micah G. Robinson!

honeymoon hotel suite decoration kelly dellinger events
honeymoon suite decoration kelly dellinger events
honeymoon suite decoration kelly dellinger events
honeymoon suite decoration kelly dellinger events
honeymoon suite decoration kelly dellinger events
honeymoon suite decoration kelly dellinger events
honeymoon suite decoration kelly dellinger events
honeymoon suite decoration kelly dellinger events
honeymoon suite decoration kelly dellinger events

Think of something you'd love to incorporate in your wedding or special event that hasn't been done before? Shoot me an email and I'll be happy to find a way to make it happen for you! :)

featured:: borrowed & blue:: kde interview

I had the privilege of being interviewed for the fabulous new wedding vendor directory resource, Borrowed & Blue, last month! See a snippet below and read the whole thing here:

What do you love about the wedding industry & working with brides?

I love the gravity involved with weddings: they’re events, first and foremost, but they hold so much importance to people. It’s probably the most memorable party of a person’s life! With that in mind, wedding industry professionals take that very seriously. We understand it’s not just a dress, a bouquet is more than flowers, and why everything is such a big deal. It’s also amazing to be in the industry that celebrates love the most – literally every decision is made around a pivotal relationship between two people who love each other. As far as working with brides is concerned, I love helping bring their dreams to fruition, finding them the perfect vendors that fit their values and tastes, coming up with beautiful ideas and ways to incorporate their relationship into the day’s celebrations. I love how intimate the relationship between my clients and me can be: I see couples extensively for months (sometimes years!), help problem-solve and plan the most important party of their lives, and get to share in the experience of their wedding day. It’s such an honor and absolutely humbling to be chosen to walk with them through that period of their lives. It’s fulfilling and meaningful for me.

What is your advice for a couple on a strict budget?

The one thing I drill into my clients’ heads over and over, no matter their budget, is PRIORITIZE!!! Regardless of how much money you have to play with, you have to know exactly what you care about and want to invest in – even if you’re not shelling out a ton of money, you’re still limited by timelines and the boundaries of reality, so it is absolutely imperative that you and your fiancé prioritize what will be going into your wedding. I also strongly encourage my more limited budget clients to think outside of the traditional realms of what a wedding “should” be. You might want a huge blowout wedding with a full meal, 200 of your closest friends, and flowers for days, for example. If you can’t afford to feed everyone a four-course supper (food’s expensive, y’all!), why not have a brunch wedding? You can still have just as many people attend but fewer people are going to drink heavily in the morning (hello, mimosa or bloody mary bar!), and depending on what you serve, you can get away with serving less food (for less money). You can also provide less reception seating (and therefore fewer centerpieces, saving costs), you won’t need as much lighting, and you can limit the timeline from start to finish (saving on hourly expenses). Morning weddings are just as charming as evening affairs. PLUS, you get to spend a whole day with your new spouse… you can get dinner afterwards for the two of you, maybe massages, actually get to ENJOY your wedding night hotel suite… think of the opportunities!

Another surefire way to lower your wedding costs is to cut down that guest list. Do you REALLY need 300 people at your wedding? Would you seriously buy every person on your list dinner if you went out to eat with him or her? That’s essentially what you’re doing. Are you still going to be close friends with them six months after the wedding? Remember your time is limited on your wedding day. You only get to talk to people for a few minutes over the course of the whole day. If you invite substantially fewer guests, you get to spend more quality time with each of them. Food for thought!

You are happily married. Can you share one piece of marriage advice for our brides-to-be?

The most important thing is to love your spouse more than yourself. Our natural human tendency is to be selfish (I’m particularly guilty of this most of the time), but I guarantee your marriage will be a thousand times happier and more fulfilling when you bless your spouse by loving them first. Also, always be gracious. Both of you will make mistakes frequently (welcome to reality!), but have grace with one another. Be quick to forgive, slow to anger. Drew and I strive to have our relationship reflect that of Jesus and the Church – we may be far from perfect, but when your goals and hearts are in the right place, even if you fall short, it’s so much better than being unintentional.

Be sure to add Kelly Dellinger Events to your Borrowed & Blue WishList for your own wedding in Nashville!

Thanks to Borrowed & Blue for choosing me to be the spotlighted planner of April! Check out their website -- a valuable wedding planning tool -- here!

expert planning advice on the Nashville Wedding Planners Group blog

Do you have a question about wed-iquette? Have a wedding planning woe that's got you stumped? The Nashville Wedding Planners Group offers weekly advice from its Expert Planner Panel. Utilize this valuable resource by following along with the NWPG blog and submitting your wedding planning quandaries to info@nashvilleweddingplannersgroup.com!

a few reasons i love weddings | part four

To get to know me a little better, I'm sharing a multi-part series on how on earth I stumbled upon this marvelous career and found my calling. Stay tuned this week for the remaining installments! {See Part OnePart Two, & Part Three here!}

Fast-forward six months, and my supervisor mentioned one day that the wedding planner she worked for was currently looking for a spring intern. I freaked out and IMMEDIATELY went to a computer to compose her an email.  

Hi, Mary Alice!

     I'm a junior at Belmont University and an aspiring weddings/formal events planner. I am currently working for one of your Event Assistants. . . I've been following your company's blog for years and was so thrilled to find out Kimberly was part of your team.  She told me A Delightful Day was looking to hire an intern this January, and I would LOVE to be considered for the position.  Any sort of experience I can get with event planning/coordinating would be incredible, especially with a company I've admired since high school. Please let me know if you'd like me to send in my resume or an application specific to ADD.

Thanks so much, Kelly Stack

And then, as fate would have it, I joined the team of incredible planners I'd marveled over for years. I assisted with beautiful weddings in gorgeous settings across Nashville -- barns, symphony halls, gothic cathedrals, Hindu temples, plantation homes and modern brick-and-mortar venues galore. I assisted with every wedding I could possibly fit into my schedule and worked behind-the-scenes (blogging, marketing, and assisting with event plans) during the week. Mary Alice was a marvelous planner to learn from, having had years of experience under her belt and plenty of stunning events in her portfolio.

When I graduated from Belmont (finally having settled on achieving a Communications degree!), I moved up in the ranks from an Event Assistant to Event Planner and had the privilege to direct some lovely weddings on my own. Coupled with the weddings I'd started to plan and execute independently through word-of-mouth, I kept very busy, filling my calendar with all kinds of odds-and-ends of wedding work.

Since I emerged into the wedding industry back in January 2010, I've done everything from logging wedding videography footage to setting up gorgeous floral centerpieces (and making a FEW on my own!), manning a photo booth, directing bridal fashion shows behind the runway, putting together out-of-town welcome bags, and designing inspiration boards for brides who want a visual aid to depict their wedding day "vision."

I love what I do, and I love the field I'm in. As the subject of this series depicts, there are so many things I love about weddings... The fashion. The color palettes. Unique, personalized details. Making old things new. Repurposing beautiful items to incorporate in wedding day decor. Tablescapes. Gorgeous rental furniture and place settings. WEDDING CAKE. Beautiful textures, textiles, and materials. Insanely pretty locations. I love the variety of ways you can go about producing a modern wedding:  elopement for two followed by a champagne dinner and tiramisu, draped tent with dramatic lighting for 200, covered bridge celebration with a church reception, gospel choirs singing recessionals, synchronized swimmer cocktail hour entertainment! There are unlimited possibilities, and brides are getting creative with their plans! MEGA SWOON.

So there's my journey. From start to the next big start. (I'm never finished;)

I hope you'll follow along!!! :)

a few reasons i love weddings | part two

To get to know me a little better, I'm sharing a multi-part series on how on earth I stumbled upon this marvelous career and found my calling. Stay tuned every day this week for the remaining installments! {See Part One here!}

In the meantime, I was trying desperately to figure out some path for my career goals. I started out at Belmont on the musical theatre track, then switched to theatre when I realized I'd be getting a music degree rather than a BFA, and then toyed around with political science and possibly going to law school. I actually worked the event setup for the special unveiling party for Belmont's brand new Troutt Theatre just a week or two after classes had started my freshman year, and followed the event planner around asking her about what she did and how she liked it. Everyone in theatre insisted that event planners had way too hard of jobs and never could make any money (ironic, no?!), so even my professors were super discouraging when I mentioned having those interests outside of acting. It stayed at the back of my mind, however. One of the communications professors I'd had a freshman seminar with had become a mentor to me for several semesters after I had his class, and I casually brought up how I thought it'd be lovely to be a wedding planner during one of our conversations. "Oh no, you don't want to be a wedding planner. Dealing with all those terrible bridezillas and their neediness? That'd be awful! You're much more suited for lobbying or something meaningful like law school. You have the potential to actually help people this way," he insisted.

{i'm third from the left... My sassy freshman theatre days!}

{i'm third from the left... My sassy freshman theatre days!}

I resigned myself to continue pursuing something government-related (probably helping Aborigines or native tribal people maintain their cultural rights, you know...) and registered for a sophomore fall semester of upper-level PoliSci classes. I happened to go through sorority recruitment that fall. During recruitment I talked with girls about amazing things like socials and mixers and planning formals -- it sounded like such a dream! On bid day I happened to catch a ride to our off-campus celebration with my chapter's current Social Chair:  a ridiculously cool and impressively ambitious girl who was my year. I told her I LOVED throwing parties and would totally help her with anything if she needed it. She invited me to the Social Committee's monthly meeting that upcoming Monday, and I spent many an evening from that point on painting props, making crafts, and listening to the active members' stories of Event Planning classes Belmont offered and how they got to be elected to fancy positions like Social Chair & Assistant.

My first sorority friend -- the fabulous former Social Chair Liz!

My first sorority friend -- the fabulous former Social Chair Liz!

I was having a blast planning parties, but Comparative Political Regimes and International Politics were kicking my butt in the classroom. My "never-made-a-B-in-my-life" status vanished rapidly before my eyes -- and I started to realize my studies were more about feeling self-important than doing anything I was called to or found legitimate meaning in. In November, my sorority president approached me about running for Social Chair. "ME? I just got initiated! There's no way I'm qualified for this!" I responded. A couple weeks passed, EC election happened, and the new Executive Officers appointed Staff Positions. "Don't tell anyone, but you got voted Social Chair!" one of my sisters whispered to me in class. My day, dimmed by my boyfriend having just broken up with me and impending exams, immediately brightened!

...stay tuned tomorrow for installment #3!