Hello Productions

Pittsburgh Wedding and Event Planners

An Intimate Look Inside a Hello Wedding November 27, 2018

So many times, I am asked, “what makes a wedding stand out from the rest?” My immediate answer is that it’s the personal touches that truly make it special. From the moment I met Jess and Nate, I knew their wedding would be one for the books.

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Jess and Nate live in New York City, but were returning to their roots in Pittsburgh for their big day. The bride and groom met in college at Penn State and Nate has been making Jess (and everyone around him,) laugh ever since. We had a beautiful day at Phipp’s Conservatory and Botanical Garden’s; sunny, blue skies and a light breeze were the perfect setting for this truly epic wedding.

 

The day was relaxed, but absolutely buzzed with excitement as Nate and Jess did a first look atop Hotel Monaco (Rachel Rowland Photography). Two hours later and guests from near and far started arriving to the outdoor garden for the ceremony. With both of her parents by her side, Jess walked down the aisle to Nate (who had the biggest smile on his face when he saw his bride!)

To make the ceremony all the more personal, our officiant was the cousin and very close friend of Jess. Jess and Nate choose to recite their own vows, and there was not a dry eye in the house (wedding planner included!) The love, honor and appreciation that these two have for each other speaks volumes of their relationship as now husband and wife.

 

Right after their grand entrance, our bride and groom welcomed all guests onto the dance floor to immediately get the party started. Friends and family were overjoyed to share this moment with them! Countless intoxicating smiles and guests jumping with joy and excitement was an all-night occurrence.

Parents of the bride gave a beautiful speech, translated into English by Jess’s cousin. The very last line of their speech was spoken in English, “Congratulations Jessy and Nate, we love you both very much.” I truly mean it when I say that I have never felt so much love at a wedding in my entire life.

 

The personal touches didn’t stop there! Nate and his brothers, (ever-so-talented musicians), surprised Jess and wedding guests by joining the 9-piece band on stage to perform live. (Sneaking around with trumpets and saxophones is not easy, but we did it thanks to help from our friends in Elite Showband!)

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The celebration never stopped–dancing lasted well into the evening and guests remained at the reception until the very last minute. Jess and Nate had the exact recipe for the most flawless and personal wedding ever: a perfect day, joy, excitement and so much love. Congrats again to Jess and Nate!

Blog post by Hello Event Coordinator, Christina McLachlan

 

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The Late-Night Bite Food Truck December 13, 2017

A wedding day can be quite tiresome for your guests. After a whole day filled with bubbly conversation, shuttle services, amazing dance moves, and of course love, your guests may need a delicious ‘pick-me-up’… We introduce: The Late-Night Bite Food Truck!

Acqua Photo

(Photo courtesy of Acqua Photo)

 

In the later portion of your reception, consider booking a late-night bite for your guests. Something to soak up your signature cocktail or even fill them up so they can stay on the dance floor! Late-night bites can vary from tacos to ice cream. Nothing says, ‘don’t stop the party’ like comfort food!

 

We’ve curated a list of our favorite classic and creative late-night bite ideas for all your ‘midnight’ snacking needs:

 

Tacos

Mexicalbi

(Photo courtesy of Mexicalbi)

 

Mac & Cheese

(Photos courtesy of Alison Mish Photography)

 

Grilled Cheese

Zac Wolf Photography

(Photo courtesy of Zac Wolf Photography)

 

We also love when couples share their sweet tooth with their guests by bringing them some sweet treats!

 

Donuts

Abby Jiu

(Photo courtesy of Abby Jiu)

 

Ice Cream

Vintage and Lace

(Photo courtesy of Vintage and Lace)

 

After all, your wedding guests come first. What better way to keep them happy than to keep them full!

Blog by Hello Productions Intern: Molly Mitchell

 

A Popular Question When Planning Events: Party Favors or No Party Favors? February 12, 2017

We are weighing in on the age old question: if the party favor is a must. Giving your guests party favors at your wedding or special event is a generous gesture, however, it is not necessary. Favors can add up to a lot of money and it could possibly be something your guests might not even want. But of course, if you have favors in mind that are cohesive with the theme of your event, unique, or something your guests will cherish forever – then you should do it! If you decide that a typical favor is not something you want for your event, think of the favor more like a souvenir or even a post-event snack that everyone will enjoy. Here are our top 5 picks of alternative favor ideas from some of our local Pittsburgh vendors.

Photo Booth

There is no better memory than those caught in a moment on camera. Whether picture perfect or silly and fun, a photo strip of your guests is something everyone will love and keep forever. Love a little retro and vintage? Check out this unique vendor, Pittsburgh Camper Booth. A vintage retro photo booth on wheels!

Donuts or Breakfast

After a long night of dancing and celebration, everyone always wakes up hungry! Wrap up a donut, fresh scone or pastry by Oakmont Bakery for your guests the next morning.
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Caricature Artist

Caricature Art makes for a fun and exciting take-home favor. This is always a hit at every event, your guests will be talking about it for weeks! Call The Pittsburgh Caricature Co. to book your premier caricature studio for your next event.

Waffle Truck

Who wouldn’t want to exit a wedding venue and find fresh, gourmet waffles as their parting gift? Have your guests leave your event with an unexpected and delectable treat by The Waffler Truck.
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Custom Coasters

Instead of purchasing your typical monogram napkins or paper coasters, why not get creative with calligraphy by Gardner Ann’s by Katie Harbison. The coasters don’t have to have the event date for your guests to remember they received it on your special day. This is something your guests will keep forever and use often.
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Hooray – You’re Engaged! Now What? January 8, 2017

He popped the question and you said YES! Now you are engaged – congratulations! There are so many things to think about, but don’t get overwhelmed! Here is what to do next.

Call your parents, siblings, family and best friends:

Don’t let your family and best friends find out on social media. Give them the honor of hearing the fantastic news first. Don’t hesitate to get creative with a mock save-the-date, unique photo of the location where you were engaged, surprise them with a facetime call for a first-time look at your new ring, or better yet, surprise them in person so you can witness their priceless reaction!

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Photo from theknot.com

Make sure your nails are on point:

Your hands will be in the spotlight for quite a while! So be confident and show off that ring with a brand new manicure.

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Photo from brides.com

Get your ring appraised and insured:

This might not be one of the most exciting things about the engagement or one of the first things you think about, but it could seriously save you (especially him!) in the long run. Ring insurance can be purchased as an extension of your renters or homeowners policy. Another option is to insure your ring through a company that specializes in jewelers insurance.

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Photo from brides.com

Get your ring resized:

Your new ring might fit like a glove or it might be slipping right off of your finger. If it is not a snug fit, make sure you go to a jeweler ASAP to get your ring sized to fit you correctly. If not, you might be utilizing your ring insurance sooner than you thought!

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Photos from everafterguide.com

Start thinking about a potential date and set your budget:

Wedding venues get booked far in advance so it is wise to set a date as soon as possible. Plus, everyone will be asking if you set a date, so you will be prepared with an answer! Also, think about the kind of wedding you want to have and crunch some numbers to set the budget for your wedding day.

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Photos from marthastewartweddings.com

Have an engagement party:

People will want to congratulate you and your fiance on the engagement. This is a great time to introduce family members who haven’t met and will be seeing a lot of each other during all of the wedding festivities. The engagement party should be held within a few months of the proposal.

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Photo from weddingpaperdivas.com

Go on a date night and have fun:

Relax, spend time with each other and remember why you got engaged in the first place! Enjoy every moment of your engagement and the exciting feeling of calling your man your fiance! Embrace the moment of being engaged before all of the planning begins. When you are ready to start planning, don’t forget to call us at Hello Productions to help you plan your dream wedding day from beginning to end!

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Photo from marieclaire.com

 

 

 

 

 

Wedding Keepsakes: Remembering the Feeling September 7, 2016

 

Your wedding is a big day filled with big moments! How to remember those moments can feel overwhelming, so we are here to provide some advice. Check out four ways to lock in those special moments for years to come.

First Look: Capturing the Moment

Brides have told us that one of their favorite wedding day moments is seeing their groom’s reaction for the first time. Seeing your dress and veil. Sharing an intimate kiss. Wiping away a small tear. These are perfect reasons why you should schedule your photographer during this moment. To take it one step further, hire a videographer to capture footage of both parties getting ready, then finishing with the moment of the reveal. This gives the other person an inside look at what the other did to get ready and their emotions in the process.

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Photo from onewed.com

 

Saying “I Do”: Remembering Your Wedding Vows

Your vows are the promises you are making to your partner, so having a way to remember your words is a reminder of your love for each other. Framing these vows in a beautiful script is a great way to showcase a unique part of your wedding day in your home. Thinking outside the box? Frame the actual sound byte of your “I do” and make it into a picture.

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Photos from wedpics.com and swannsoirees.com

 

Tossing the Bouquet: Preserving Your Flowers

Your bridal bouquet is as important as your bridal gown. It’s perfectly crafted to fit your frame, style, and vibe! There are many different ways to remember the flowers that kept your day fresh – shadowboxes and bell jars are ways to preserve the actual flowers, while artistic renditions can be commissioned to capture the beauty of your bouquet.

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Photos from stylemepretty.com and letsgetweddy.com

 

First Toast: Celebrating with Champagne

Wedding toasts are a long standing tradition, and they give friends and family a chance to express their love and wishes for the bride and groom. One way to remember the champagne toast is to use the corks in a 3D art project. You could also incorporate your guests and celebrate in the years to come by having guests sign anniversary champagne bottles! One year, five years, 10 years down the road… you can toast to the memories of your wedding day with a bottle of bubbly!

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Pictures from pinterest.com and Hello Productions

 

 

2015 Bridal Fashion Week Recap November 6, 2015

Filed under: Hello Details — Hello Productions @ 2:33 pm
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As a gal who loves to chat to anyone I meet, and as someone who finds that words come naturally, I almost (almost) find myself speechless. I’m searching for the right words to describe the endless array of gowns and bridal-wear showcased at this year’s Bridal Fashion Week; the traditional idea of bridal-wear was blown out of the water with three major trends including: stunning jumpsuits, mini dresses and ethereal gowns. After I picked my jaw off the floor, I knew I had to pinpoint my favorites here for you to drool over too. I cannot wait to see the no-doubt gorgeous weddings that will accompany these dresses this coming year!

 

One of my all-time favorites is Pnina Tornai, who does classic designs, but with a twist. Whether it’s a gown dripping with crystals, a plunging neckline or an open back, she always pushes the traditional envelope. Her new collection is called Wind Upon Water, which truly sets the stage for the heavenly gowns. It’s hard to choose which dress takes the cake; each dress is upstaged by the next! Here is a backstage glimpse of a few of the gowns that showcase the amazing bead & lace work. Is it just me, or do I see a little 60’s glam inspiration??

 
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I am a serious fan of black and white (if you saw my last blog post, I included an ahh-mazing black and white bridesmaid dress). Normally I wouldn’t think black belongs on a wedding gown, but Mark Zunino proved me wrong! Every dress in his collection is swoon worthy, but you have to see these black and white numbers, the second one is even hand painted!

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Excuse me while I try to start my heart again, because Lazarro slayed Bridal Fashion Week. While I thought Pnina’s designs and Mark’s black & white gowns were life changing, I was not prepared for Lazarro’s floral numbers. I could choose to include his stunning traditional white and beaded gowns, but what’s the fun in that? Also, this blush drop-waist number is everything I’ve always wanted to see in a gown. I adore his use of color and patterns to make these inspirational gowns.

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Also making the cut are …

 

Monique Lhuillier (Love the high-low drama and beautiful textured fabric)

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Fashion house Marchesa (Perfect to show off stunning shoes, like these)

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This killer jumpsuit number by Angel Sanchez

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And last but not least… this true beauty by Lela Rose

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Hello Taylor Smith!

Fall Intern 2015

 

Taylor is a Pittsburgh native who recently graduated from High Point University, in High Point, North Carolina, with a B.A. in Strategic Communications and a minor in Event Management.

 

She discovered her love for event planning while she was the philanthropy chair for her sorority. Her favorite part about event management is watching everyone’s hard work come together to create a magical event. She is, of course, a sucker for a good love story and enjoys traveling, reading and practicing yoga.
We are so excited for Taylor to join the Hello team!

 

Pittsburgh’s National Aviary Is Perfect For Love Birds August 17, 2015

We couldn’t help but share this recent Hello Productions’ wedding at The National Aviary, located in Pittsburgh. Located in West Park on Pittsburgh’s historic North Side, the National Aviary’s diverse collection comprises more than 500 birds representing more than 150 species from around the world, many of them threatened or endangered in the wild.

 

We of course went wild over these two “love birds”. Photo credit to Tara Petro Photography.

 
aviary collection
 

Looking for more information about having an event at the Pittsburgh Aviary? Visit their website at http://www.aviary.org or give Hello a call!

 
 
 

 

Find Out What Hello Productions Has Been Up To! December 7, 2014

Hello Productions has been busy recently and we thought we’d give our readers a peek at some of our recent events! From baby showers to weddings, Hello Productions has been busy planning and executing events in both Pittsburgh and Raleigh. And keep in mind that our planning services don’t stop there! We are happy to help with destination event as well!

 

Laura & Bill’s Wedding

Photography by Michael Will Photography

 

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Natasha’s Baby Shower

Photography by Debra Brody

 

baby shower collection

 
 

Megan and Erik’s Wedding

Photography by Betty Elaine

 

megan and erik collection

 
 
 

Want more details and photos? See more from these events (and others!) on Hello Production’s Natasha’s Facebook Page. You can also find more past events in our Hello Productions Portfolio!

 

Hello Productions Plans The Knot’s Cocktails & Connections in Pittsburgh May 31, 2011

Filed under: Hello News — Hello Productions @ 9:03 pm
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The Knot, the one-stop wedding planning solution for brides with a national magazine and website, has selected Hello Productions to plan its upcoming networking event, taking place in Pittsburgh in June. Their Cocktails & Connections Networking Event serves as a thank you party for all of the event professionals they work with as well as an opportunity for Pittsburgh’s finest in the event industry to network and exchange ideas with one another.

 

A sexy red, black and white décor will transport attendees back in time to an evening in the 1920s (think: The Great Gatsby), when a speakeasy was the place to be. Hello Productions will be handling the planning for this event, but we couldn’t do it without the help of the fabulous vendors who are offering their products and services as well.

 

On this evening in June, the Mansion at Maple Heights will be the setting for the event. The Mansion at Maple Heights, located in Shadyside, is a renovated turn-of-the-century residence, originally built in the early 1900s. It houses a bed and breakfast and several beautiful spaces perfect for a wedding or event. Stained glass windows, hardwood floors and a grand master staircase all add to the ambiance of this space.

 

 

Guests will mingle amongst one another and “characters,” including flapper girls, while sipping the signature cocktail, “The Flapper,” provided by Clique Vodka. Those with a palate for wine can enjoy a tasting in the Study of the mansion provided by Engine House 25 Wines.

 

La Crème will be providing bite-sized hors d’oeuvres and several food stations set up around the space. All Occasions will be providing the rentals, including furniture to create a lounge atmosphere, and the linens, adding color to each room, will be provided by Mosaic. Bill Chisnell will be providing floral arrangements, lamps and some additional décor to really bring the theme to life.

 

In addition to the lighting, Wenning Entertainment will be providing music to keep the crowd entertained throughout the evening and Lee Terbosic will be entrancing guests with his strolling magician act.

 

To end the night on a sweet note, Vanilla Pastry will be providing bite-sized desserts to be served by the flapper girls.

 

Visit our Press & Raves page to read the full press release and check back for more event details and photos!

 

 

Hello Productions’ Spotlight Couple: Kim Betcher & Dave Lewis March 29, 2011

Filed under: Spotlight Couple — Hello Productions @ 8:49 am
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Wedding Date: September 10, 2011

Location: Renaissance Pittsburgh Hotel

 

1. How did you meet?

 

We met in Fairview Beach, VA in 2005 over Memorial Day weekend. I was visiting friends and Dave, who was living in Northern Virginia at the time, was in town visiting his parents. My friends and I had gone out to a place called Tim’s Rivershore that Friday evening and Dave was there with his friends. After hearing me quote a line from one of my favorite movies, Tombstone (which happens to be one of his favorites, as well), he “bumped” into me. We chatted for a while and made plans to go kayaking the next day. However, after a few more drinks we lost each other in the crowd that night.

 

My cell phone battery was dying so I turned if off the next day thinking he wasn’t going to call and went out for the day. That evening my friends and I went out to a different bar and the first person I saw when I walked in was Dave. He told me he’d tried to call me to go kayaking, but kept getting my voicemail. A group of us built a bonfire on the beach later that night and he and I talked for most of the evening. When Dave called the next day to go to lunch, I answered my phone. We’ve been dating ever since.

 

2. How did he propose?

 

It was a 70 degree day in November so Dave suggested we take advantage of the warm weather and spend Saturday afternoon having some food and drinks on Redbeard’s patio. (Redbeard’s was the first place I took Dave on his initial visit to Pittsburgh when we first started dating.) As we were riding the incline to Mount Washington he suggested we stop at the overlook. However, when we got to the overlook it was overly crowed and I just kept walking to Redbeard’s instead of dealing with the crowd. Unbeknownst to me, Dave was fumbling to pull the ring out his pocket as I kept walking.

 

A few drinks later, he tried (unsuccessfully) to get me to go out the other overlook, again. By this time, he had made up his mind that this day was not meant to be the day to ask me to marry him. About 20 minutes later we started talking about my aging grandma and if we were going to get married we’d have to do it sooner than later. Dave swears that the next words out of my mouth were “Well, you better hurry up and buy a ring. My gram isn’t getting any younger.” His response was along the lines of “Kim, I have a ring in my pocket and I’ve been trying to ask you all day. You keep ruining every opportunity I’ve had.” To which I still didn’t believe him until he finally pulled the ring out of his pocket and showed it to me. I don’t think I even said yes. I just grabbed it and put it on my finger.

 

3. What is the thing that has surprised you the most while planning your wedding?

 

I’ve been a bridesmaid 13 times so I’d like to think I’m pretty well-versed as to what goes into a wedding. However, being the bride this time around, the devil definitely is in the details and many of the smaller aspects of my friends’ weddings that were once lost on me are becoming more apparent. I can now understand why brides feel overwhelmed.

 

4. What is the one thing you are most looking forward to on your wedding day?

 

We’re looking most forward to saying our vows to each other and becoming husband and wife. We’re also very excited to spend the weekend with our friends and family and celebrate all of the moments that make the memories.

5. What is the one thing you are most nervous about on your wedding day?

 

Dave’s a bit nervous to be in front of the crowd. I’m more concerned about spilling something on my dress. (White clothing is typically not my friend).

 

6. What made you hire a wedding planner?

 

I work 60 hours/week and do not have time to plan a wedding. Furthermore, I had absolutely no idea where to start as far as researching, locating, and interviewing potential vendors.

 

7. Has it been helpful to have a wedding planner?

 

Ashley has made the process, to this point, almost too easy. It literally has been virtually stress-free. From recognizing the type of wedding we wanted, setting up meetings with vendors that fit our personalities, and offering advice and recommendations when we’ve got the deer in the headlights look, she has been an essential part of our day. I would highly recommend hiring a wedding planner, if not for your own sanity, but for the others around you.

 

To book Hello Productions for your big day, please contact us at info@helloproductions.com!