Hello Productions

Pittsburgh Wedding and Event Planners

Plan A Couples’ Baby Shower Even the Guys Will Love December 8, 2013

If you’re looking to do something non-traditional for your baby shower, we suggest having a couple’s shower. The dad-to-be gets to be involved in this special day and your guests will enjoy bringing their significant others.

 

Keep some traditional aspects of the baby shower but don’t be afraid to throw in a few twists. Here are some of our favorite ideas.

 

Keep the Invites Unfussy

 

While images of expecting mothers and baby bottles are adorable, consider your guest list and remember that half will be males. We love these chalkboard-inspired couples baby shower invitations on etsy.com.

 


 

Keep the Games Laid-Back

 

Most guys might cringe at the thought of playing baby shower games, but here are a few that everyone (even the guys) will enjoy.

 

Baby Picture Game – Ask guests to bring a baby picture of themselves to the party, and then have everyone guess who is who.

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Guess the Baby Food – Blindfolded guests sample unlabeled baby food and try to guess the correct flavor.

 

Childhood Stories – Each guest writes down a funny story about their childhood and the expecting couple has to guess who belongs to each story.

 

Baby Gamble – Set up a betting board for the date/time and weight of the baby. Chart the weights down the Y axis of the graph (4oz increments from 6 to 11 lbs) and the times on the X axis (12hr increments for 5 days on either side of the due date). You wind up with a 20×20 grid. Each bet makes a guess on the date/weight. Sell ‘squares’ for $1 (like a Super Bowl grid) or give everyone two guesses (for free). The winner gets 1/2 the money and the other 1/2 goes toward a night out for the new parents.

 

Bottle Race – Fill baby bottles with the beverage of your choice (beer for the guys at a grown-ups’ party). Give everyone a bottle and on the count of three they must suck the bottles dry as quickly as possible. The first person to down the contents of his or her bottle wins.

 

Keep the Food Yummy

 

Check out one of Hello Productions’ past blogs for some fun food ideas: https://helloproductions.wordpress.com/tag/party-food-bar-ideas/.

 
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Keep the Favors Functional

 

While favors are not necessary, if you decide to give your guests something on their way out, pick something functional that everyone will enjoy. Some of our favorite ideas include: wine glasses (so each couple will take home a set), fun favored popcorn (The Pittsburgh Popcorn Company has all types of flavors that can be purchased at one of their locations or ordered online), a 6-pack of the couple’s favorite beer with custom labels, or baby bottles filled with hot chocolate mix and marshmallows.

 
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Want help planning a baby shower? Request a quote from Hello Productions!

 

Have any other great ideas for a couples’ baby shower? Tell us about them!

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Aisle Runner Etiquette and Ideas November 2, 2013

The aisle runner originated as a barrier to protect the bride from evil spirits as she made her way down the aisle. It continued to be used to protect the bride’s dress as she walked down the aisle and nowadays, most often as a special way to announce the bride’s entrance. Even non-traditional brides like the tradition of an aisle runner, but it is completely optional in your wedding!

 

There is no right or wrong way to display your runner, but common practice is to reserve it for the bridal party or just the bride. Aisle runners may have started out as paper, but they have come a long way! Whether you want a traditional aisle runner or something more unique, we compiled aisle runner ideas for all types of weddings and all types of brides!

 

Flowers

Using flowers to indicate the aisle works really well for outdoor weddings, where a fabric or paper aisle runner wouldn’t hold up on soft ground. If you decide to use flowers to create a design as your aisle runner, make sure you rope off the center aisle and usher guests into their seats from the other sides. You also want to make sure your photographer has a chance to capture the design before the procession!

 

Light

Using lights can help illuminate the path for a wedding held at dusk or can add a romantic element to the aisle runner. Some examples include rope lights, white string lights wrapped in fabric or even candles.

 

Source: elimweddingsaislerunnerideas.blogspot.com

Source: elimweddingsaislerunnerideas.blogspot.com

We also love the idea of lanterns down the aisle. Just remember to enclose your candles in glass to prevent guests from knocking over a candle or the wind from blowing them out.

 

Clockwise from top left: 1., 3., 4. http://trendybride.net and 3. http://www.brides.com

Clockwise from top left: 1., 3., 4. http://trendybride.net and 3. http://www.brides.com


 

We also LOVE this gobo (or light projection) on the floor as an aisle runner!

Fabric

Fabric aisle runners can add fun designs, colors and even a monogram to your ceremony. From burlap to lace, it is easy to find one (or make one) that will fit with the theme of your wedding. If you have an outdoor wedding, remember to make sure to put hard flooring under the aisle or have the ceremony on harder ground – you want to prevent anyone from tripping on the runner with their heels!
 

Clockwise from top left: Burlap (catherineguidry.com), Non-slip with Monograms (http://strictlyweddings.com), Burlap with Lace (http://www.weddingbee.com/classifieds), Damask (http://boards.weddingbee.com)

Clockwise from top left: Burlap (catherineguidry.com), Non-slip with Monograms (http://strictlyweddings.com), Burlap with Lace (http://www.weddingbee.com/classifieds), Damask (http://boards.weddingbee.com)

Looking for an aisle runner that is really customized? This DIY aisle tells the couple’s story, complete with pictures and a corresponding puzzle in the program for the guests!

Bonus: How cool is this idea of non-traditional seating for a ceremony? This would work perfectly for an intimate wedding!

 


 

Looking for a few more ideas? Visit the Walk This Way board on Pinterest by TheMarriedApp or visit the photo galleries on www.HelloProductions.com!

 
 

 

Great Venues for Your Company’s Holiday Party October 30, 2012

Yes, the time has come to begin (if you haven’t already) planning and coordinating your company’s holiday party. Whether big or small, companies have begun to invest in this tradition again after a few shaky years when they were scaling back or even all-together eliminating company events in an effort to save money in a tight economy. A holiday party is a great way to show valued employees a good time and to thank them for their year-long efforts for the organization. In Pittsburgh, we’re blessed with a wide variety of venues capable of handling very large, very small, industrial-chic to high-end functions that fit every taste and style. We’ve picked five unique locations to showcase:

 

Clockwise from Top Left: Lexus Club, Soldiers & Sailors Memorial Hall & Museum, The Mattress Factory, Stage AE, Engine House 25.


 

The Mattress Factory: Any company could enjoy this interesting and industrial space for either a sit-down or a blast of a cocktail party. It’s combination of contemporary art and flexible rental spaces make this a very unique gem on Pittsburgh’s North Side.

 

The Lexus Club: Whether a hockey fan or not, you’d be hard-pressed not to enjoy this classy venue inside of Pittsburgh’s Consol Energy Center. With enough space to host over 250 people for a sit-down meal, or 400 for cocktails and hors d’oeuvres, you have many options in this space. Overlooking downtown and with the facility’s Aramark catering staff at your beck-and-call, this is a pretty fabulous place to reflect on 2012’s victories!

 

Stage AE: As Pittsburgh’s newest concert and event venue, Stage AE has hit the North Shore by storm by bringing not only a four seasons entertainment venue to the area, but one that provides numerous options for a variety of hip and urban event styles. With its minimalistic interior space, it can accommodate between 400-1500 easily in a multitude of configurations. It’s also a great place to book a band for your after-dinner entertainment so guests can dance the night away.

 

Engine House 25: Located in the heart of Lawrenceville, and home two event spaces, an operational winery and wine cellar as well as the Clemente Museum, this is one venue that is unlike any other in town. With ample parking and a very unique blend of baseball history, industrial-chic interior design and intimate wine cellar, you have many options when it comes to entertaining your team in this fun location. They can even custom-make wine bottle labels for your event in-house, an added special feature your employees will surely be impressed with!

 

Soldiers & Sailors Memorial Hall & Museum: Providing a “distinctive alternative to conventional venues” in the heart of Oakland, this venue would give your guests both a fine place to party as well as a glimpse back in time to the history of our military. With its newly renovated interior and large ballroom space, this is an ideal location to host a large corporate gathering of any kind. Ideally situated near the University of Pittsburgh and public transportation, your guests will be impressed with your ability to combine convenience, affordability and a first-class space all within one location.

 

Looking for more venue ideas or help coordinating your company’s upcoming event? Contact Lindsey at lindseyb@helloproductions.com, or message me on Twitter @lbradleypgh today!

 

Corporate Event Venues: We’re looking out for you in 2012! February 20, 2012

As we look to find the perfect venues for our corporate clients in 2012, we always need to keep in mind the objectives of the event, the overall budget, and the “look and feel” of the venue to provide the perfect meeting place. There are also several other things that drive us when looking for those extraordinary properties:

 

 

Easy Access

It might seem like this is a no-brainer, but especially in an age when all attendees and companies are looking for ways to cut costs, it is imperative that this is kept in mind when planning an event. It doesn’t make sense for our clients, much less the attendees they hope to attract, to have to come by plane, train AND automobile! While we used to think of an airport hotel, or one located within the immediate vicinity, as a negative, it is becoming more of an asset for our clients if they can just hop on a shuttle to their event property after a long flight. Also, consider the time of year you host your meeting and in what part of the country. If you’re really tight on budget, it can at times make sense for us to look into venues during a time that is considered “non-peak” for an area (think Chicago or New York -snow!- for a February conference, or Miami -hurricane season!- in October.) Just understand that there could be delays or other issues involved for your guests in getting to and from the venue, not to mention the airport, on time or with minimal effort.

 

A Real Sense of Place

Have you ever attended a meeting or conference in a desirable city, only to leave feeling that you never actually got to “see” or “feel” the city at all? This can go back to what I referred to in point #1, especially if it is a venue adjacent to an airport. If we are able to secure a metropolitan location for an event, it is in your best interest as the client to showcase, at some point, what a great area you’ve secured and that you thought about your attendees’ needs at the event. This could be done through a simple but chic cocktail party at the hotel’s rooftop bar, or if that’s not possible, perhaps in a beautiful, enclosed ballroom with panoramic views of the surrounding city. Special touches during this event could include featuring locally-brewed beer or spirits, as well as making sure that the staff on-hand is prepared to answer questions about the city’s great landmarks.

 

Keep It Local

Just as serving locally-brewed beverages during a cocktail party is a great idea, perhaps you could theme this year’s luncheons to reflect locally-grown or sourced products, as well as traditional local fare? The worst thing for your travel-weary attendees is to feel as if they’ve “seen this before” at other conferences. It will really make your event stand out if you serve a meal consisting of local favorites, while providing your guests with a menu pointing out all of the farm sources for today’s meal. As planners, it is our job to work with the venue to provide your guests with the best experience possible, and food can be a big part of that experience.

 

Tech Savvy

In our digital age, no matter where you plan to host your event, no doubt your attendees will want to not only see that you’re using the newest technologies, but that they can still adequately access the technology that they need throughout their stay. As we explore venues for our clients, we want to ensure that they are wired for all attendees to have wireless internet access, strong connections (so that attendees aren’t missing and dropping calls, and so you are never interrupted during a presentation), capabilities for all types of presentation formats, and a strong technical staff onsite to assist with your every need throughout the event. And there is nothing worse than not having a back-up (or better yet, a back-up for your back-up!) when it comes to things like wireless mics, projectors or the internet connections. And, most hotels are becoming more negotiable on in-room or meeting room internet access, as this is no longer on the “nice to have” list, but is on the “must have” list for any event or meeting.

 

If you have questions on any of the above, or want to talk to Hello Productions more about your next corporate meeting or event, please contact Lindsey Bradley at lindseyb@helloproductions. We’d love to talk to you about all the ways that we can make your next event extraordinary!

 

Hello Productions Plans The Knot’s Pittsburgh Cocktails & Connections July 10, 2011

Filed under: Hello News — Hello Productions @ 9:40 pm
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Michael Will Photography

The Knot, the one-stop wedding planning solution for brides with a national magazine and website, selected Hello Productions to plan its most recent networking event, which took place in Pittsburgh a few weeks ago. Their Cocktails & Connections Networking Event served 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 transported attendees back in time to an evening in the 1920s (think: The Great Gatsby), when a speakeasy was the place to be. Hello Productions handled the planning for this event, but couldn’t have done it without the help of many fabulous vendors who offered their products and services as well.

 

The Mansion at Maple Heights, located in Shadyside, was the setting for the event. It 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.

Michael Will Photography

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

Michael Will Photography

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

Michael Will Photography

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

Michael Will Photography

To end the night on a sweet note, Vanilla Pastry provided bite-sized desserts served by the flapper girls and ESSpa, Remarkable Roses, Pretzel Crazy, and McCormick & Schmick’s provided favors for the guests, while ESSpa also provided the raffle prize.

Michael Will Photography

Other vendors providing services for the event:
BYOB – Bartending Service (contact Sara at burghbartenders@gmail.com )
Pittsburgh Valet – Valet Service

 

For more event photos by Michael Will Photography, visit our Past Weddings & Events page!

 

To make your next event unique, email us at ashley@helloproductions.com.