{Real Bride Series} Meet Melissa!

Melissa and Jake recently got married on March 5th of this year! They had a intimate beautiful ceremony with one of the cutest little flower girls we have ever seen! The details set the mood for this spring wedding with the beautiful desert in the back ground. Read more below!


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{Real Bride} Meet Julie!

Our featured Real Bride for April is Julie who was married last March. She had such a fun wedding with some elements of Irish tradition and adorable ring bears!


What is your name and when was your wedding date?
My name is Julie Kotzbach and we were married on March 14, 2015

Kate Eschbach Photography-47How did you and your groom meet?
Mike and I used to work together at a restaurant. He was a bartender and I waited tables. One days, after about 5 years of sort of knowing each other, he invited me to go hang out with him after work with some of his friends. I did. We hung out again a couple days later, and then started spending every day together. We got married just after 8 ½ years of dating.

We are dying to know, how did he propose?!
Mike proposed on Christmas Eve at my dad’s house. It was my dad’s birthday and we do Christmas with that side of my family the same day. Everyone was there. My dad and step-mom totally knew, and I had no idea. My dad called me into the living room (everyone was sitting around the room since we just opened presents), Mike snuck up behind me, my dad spun me around, and BAM! Mike was on one knee.

After he proposed lots of things that he’d said and had happened earlier in the day made total sense. He’s a sneaky little devil. I called my mom to tell her right away, but she already knew. Mike had gone to see my dad the week before to ask permission, and had gone to see my mom to tell her since she wouldn’t be there when it happened. He’s thoughtful like that.

What were your wedding colors? Did you have an overall theme for your wedding day celebration?
Our colors were grey and green. There wasn’t a theme per say. We found colors we liked, loved the space, and just kind of went with how I felt about everything. I guess maybe our paper garden23_2632_fullias became the theme since they took over our lives for a few months. Haha.49_2658_full

How large was our wedding party?
We had 4 bridesmaids, 2 groomsmen, 1 groomsmaid, 2 flower girls, and 2 ring bearers.

Where did you find yourdress? Would you say that finding your dress was a relatively easy or a difficult process?
I got my dress at David’s Bridal in Ahwatukee, it was the first and only store we went to. The consultant I had was great. I showed her all the David’s dresses I liked, but I should have shown her all my pictures. I tried on 4 dresses. The 3rd was a tea dress and I went in with the mindset that a tea dress was what I wanted. However, I wanted to like a long dress to compare. I put the dress and didn’t want to take it off. Surprising I went to my would-be dress pictures later, and the one I ended up getting was really similar to another once I had been looking at. Go figure.

Where did your ceremony and reception take place? Was there any special meaning behind the choice of venue(s)?
We had our ceremony and reception at Chapel at the Farm in Gilbert. I had been looking for a venue and was starting to feel like I had to have a certain type of wedding. It sucked. I found Chapel and went over to the site. Then I realized I’d been there many times before. My mom and I have breakfast often at the little restaurant in front of the area. The moment I walked under the pavilion I immediately relaxed. This was the place. It was pretty, open, there was a big grass area for the kids, and we could make the space whatever we wanted.

What kind of flowers did you have in your bouquet and the ceremony/ reception?
Oh the flowers. My amazing friends came over to our house for 2 months before the wedding and helped me assemble 300 paper gardenias for the entire wedding. They were amazing when they were finished!

Kate Eschbach Photography-199

What was the flavor of your wedding cake? Did you have a groom’s cake?
We ended up not having a groom’s cake, even though I tried to talk Mike into getting a 1995 Chevy cake. Our cake had 3 tiers and we did a different flavor for each tier. The bottom was almond cake with almond buttercream. (I’m normally not into almond all the much, but the cake was amazing. We tried it at our tasting and I was surprised at how yummy it was!) The middle tier was chocolate cake with cream cheese frosting, and the top tier was vanilla cake with salted caramel filling. We had buttercream for the outer layer with a simple white on white design. The whole thing was totally delicious! We may have had cake for breakfast the next day.

Did you provide favors to your guests? If so, what were they?
Since we got married on Pi Day, I decided to have a little fun with it. I made mini recipe cards of some family pie recipes and other recipes pie recipes I loved, and turned then them into a mini cookbook with a binder ring.

What details from your wedding that made it unique to you?
The flowers were A LOT of work but they meant a lot to me, and spending that extra time with my friends was fun. I made 2 flavors of popcorn, packed in Chinese take-out boxes, the night before the wedding for cocktail hour. I love making popcorn. A blogger friend made custom peg dolls for our cake toppers, complete with flat t36_2645_fullop for make. One of my favorite things was leaving the wedding in Mike’s 1955 Chevy. He’d worked for a month to get her back in action so we could drive her home from the wedding. The other big thing was, the lead piper from our bagpipe band played me down the aisle. Mike chose the song. His sister walked down the aisle to it, when his dad passed they played it, and now he was welcoming me to the family with the same song. It was a big deal to me.

Other than marrying your husband, what was your favorite moment from your wedding day?
Kate Eschbach Photography-86There are two moments.  The first was the Best Man’s speech.  Kyle was so funny and sweet, and he had the whole thing memorized.  Apparently there’s a 12 minute version of the speech I’m dying to hear.  The second was at the after party.  One of our bagpiper friends dedicated a song to me before the boys started playing their set.  He never plays this song in public, it’s only for very close friends and family special occasions.  It was a great song, and I was so flattered he thought to gift me that way.

Did you take a honeymoon? If so, where did you go?
We are hoping to honeymoon in Vegas for our anniversary.

What is one piece of wisdom you learned from your planning experience that you would like to share with future brides?Drama will happen, you can’t control it, don’t let it suck you in. We had a lot of back and forth with the guest list. Due to venue and budget limitations we were inviting family only. We managed to sneak in a few longtime friends after getting some no RSVPs back. There were people that got upset that their invitation came before another family member’s and vice versa. If anyone (moms, dads, etc.) start pushing you about RSVPs, put them on the job. If they want to know so badly, they can find out and report back to you. It added a lot of stress I didn’t need, so I made it someone else’s problem. Put them on the wedding team and make ‘em work!

Who were some of the other vendors that were a part of your dream team?
Hair and Makeup – Babydoll Weddings

DSC_6731I cannot say enough great stuff about Sabrina (and her staff)!! She’s amazing! My bridal trial was great. I had no idea how to explain what I wanted. I showed Sabrina some pics and she took it from there. She talked me into my first salon hair coloring ever and killed it! My hair and makeup day of was perfect. My curls lasted all day, which is unheard of, and I felt beautiful.
Dress – David’s Bridal Bride’s rings
Gemvara (online) –  Groom’s ring
The Irish Jeweler (online) – Finding the right claddaghs (rings) was hard, but a little searching left Mike and I both happy. I had to custom order his ring from Dublin and the jeweler was awesome!
Cake – Piece of Cake Desserts
Rentals & Catering – Heidi’s Events & Catering   (Jillian was so great to work with)
DJ – Cerrick Entertainment (Crissy kicks ass!!)
Photo Booth – AZ Photo Box (had a thumb drive of all the pics, photo strips and individual pics, to take home with us that night!)


Thank you so much Julie and Mike for sharing your special day with us! It was a honor to be included! 

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{Real Bride Series} Sabrina

We have a special treat for all of you this month, especially for one bride in particular! Our Real Bride Series is focusing on Babydoll Weddings Owner & Lead Stylist Sabrina! She and her groom, Mike, just celebrated their 1 Year Wedding Anniversary on May 27! 
Sabrina happily took the time out of her very busy schedule to share with all of you her wedding details.  What’s great is that Lead Stylist Micky had a hand in beautifying the bridal party, so we are not only shining the light on Sabrina’s fabulous wedding, it’s also a Babydoll Weddings Real Bride! 

Please enjoy Sabrina’s details and gorgeous images:

What were your wedding colors? 

White, Black and Red. Wanted to keep it a classic theme.

How many bridesmaids did you have?
I had 4 bridesmaids. All of my bridesmaids were AMAZING! They all know me so well, that they were the most help whenever I needed something. My matron of honor, April has been my best friend since 4th grade so it was so special to me to have her by my side.

Where did you find your dress? Was finding the dress a difficult process or relatively easy? 
I found a picture of what I wanted my dress to look like online. I tried to find the actual dress, but no luck. I knew whatever dress I found I was going to have to have a seamstress do some custom work. My mom and matron of honor went one weekend to several shops, my budget was very low so I was looking for an off the rack dress. We found a couple possibilities, but no “ah ha moment”. I had posted something on facebook about going dress shopping and an old high school friend private messaged me and told me that her grandmother owned a bridal dress shop and was closing it – all dresses were $100!!! I rushed over there by myself and narrowed it down to two dresses – Mom and April met me that night there and I ended up buying both dresses.

Two wedding dresses for $200 – I was in heaven. Took both dresses to an amazing seamstress, told her what I wanted and she transformed the simple $100 dress into exactly what I wanted. Simple wedding/ball gown dress with black trim at waist and at the bottom. My now husband was so amazed that my final dress with cleaning and alterations cost a total of $500. And I still have that second wedding dress if anyone is in need. 

Where did your ceremony and reception take place? 
We got married at ASU Old Main. We both just wanted a venue with a historic background story and I wanted red brick for nice background in our pictures. The cool thing is that we are both ASU Alumni – Go Devils!
What flowers did you choose for your bouquet and throughout the wedding? 
My flowers were white daisies and red roses. Again, I just wanted simply, but elegant.

What was the flavor of your cake? 
We choose not to have a cake, but do a chocolate fountain instead. It was a hit! Everyone liked all the choices of what to cover in chocolate: strawberries, marshmallows, rice krispy treats, pineapple, cookies, pretzels, etc.

Did you provide favors to your guests? 
We decided to save a little money and forego having favors and instead be able to host an open bar for our guests.

Is there a detail that you had at your wedding that makes it unique? 
Our centerpieces were very unique for us. We had 3 cylinder vases and wrapped them with a transparent image from Spain, France & Italy – these were the destinations for our honeymoon. My husband was in charge of this and they came out fantastic – filled them with water and had a floating candle in each of them.

What was your pick for “first dance” with your husband? Is there meaning to the song selection? We (aka “I”) picked Tim McGraw, My Best Friend. My husband is not really a country fan, but the words of the song symbolize our love for each other and our relationship.

Any favorite moments that stand out in the day?  
So many of them…where do I start…here are just a few. 1. My bridesmaids opening a bottle of champagne in the hotel while us getting ready and it exploding all over her and her dress. 2. Us girls being on time and waiting for the guys to be ready. 3. The first look picture…loved the look he gave me. 4. The photo booth was a blast 5. My Matron of Honors speech – it rocked! 5. Going to In-Out Burger at 2am in my wedding dress. And last but not least…calling him my Husband

Did you take a honeymoon? If so where did you go? 
Not only did we take a honeymoon, we took a trip of a lifetime! We explored Spain, France and Italy for 24 full days. In Spain we went to Malaga, Majorca and Barcelona. France we mostly stayed in Paris. Italy we toured Venice, Naples, Sorrento, Positano, Almafi, Rome, and Tuscany. The best part is we did it on our own, no travel agent, no limos or taxi, just us on one hell of an adventure.

What is one piece of advice you will leave for future brides?
Enjoy! Enjoy the fun and the memories, don’t get caught up on the things that matter to other people. Just because your friend did it one way or society says this is how weddings should be…do it your way. Skimp on the wedding budget and have a big honeymoon/vacation together.

Our thanks to Sabrina for giving us some insight on your wedding details! The color palette is indeed a classic, and it was played up so well! The centerpiece idea is truly unique, too! 
Wishing Sabrina & Mike a Happy Anniversary! Here’s to a lifetime of happiness! 
Photographer: Courtney Lively Photography//Makeup: Micky at Babydoll Weddings//Hair: Lisa at Diversity in Hair//Florist: Jack and Jills Flowers//Chocolate Fountain: A Time for Chocolate//DJ: Fannning Flames DJ//Venue: ASU Old Main//Catering: Atlasta Catering//Event Coordinator: Pro Em.
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