Thursday, July 16, 2009

We're Back and we need your help!!!

You have probably been wondering where we went! We apologize for the lack of blogging, but we are back and ready to give you some fantastic eye candy. However, we need your help!

Please submit your weddings to We are looking to inspire hawaii brides with your stories, eye candy, and experience.

Looking forward to your submissions!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Featured Vendor :: Toby Hoogs Photography

I am very excited to announce we have a new featured vendor up! This month we are featuring Toby Hoogs Photography. Toby has been photography weddings for a number of years, and still has the passion he had on his first wedding! Check out our featured vendor page to learn more about this company!

Featured Vendor :: Toby Hoogs

Photo Taken by Toby Hoogs Photography

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Happy Almost New Year

I Know!!!! We have been super slacking on the blogs around here!!! Every year I get so caught up in the holidays that all things "work" get pushed aside. It is one time of year that I remember what is really important in life...FAMILY!

That said, your wedding is also extremely important, and I promise to keep the blogs coming this year on a steady pace to help you better plan your Hawaii Wedding.

EHW New Years Resolution: to post a minimum of 3 blog posts a week all designed to help the Elite Hawaii Bride!!!!

Thanks to our friends at Side by Side Video, we have some more helpful tips! Danielle, just recently got married...well a year ago anyway :) I had the priveledge of being her wedding photographer! It is great when you have a vendor that was recently married, because they are better able to put themselves in your shoes! ...and without further ado...

1. Start Planning Early:
Whether you are planning your wedding two years from now or two months from now, it’s best to start planning as early as you can. Vendors and venues get booked really early especially if you are planning a summer wedding. The sooner you can get your foot in the door, less will be saved till the last minute and the less stressed you will be. Another benefit of planning early is getting a good quality vendor. The longer you wait, the more you will have to “settle” for someone you might not be as happy with or might not have the style you want. When thinking about videography, this is especially true. Once you know who you want to hire, contact them immediately to make sure they aren’t already booked for your wedding date and set up an appointment to meet.

2. Meet your vendors in person:
When hiring your vendors, meeting them in person is a must! Videographers have limited abilities with putting full quality videos online and depending on your internet connection you might not be able to view much. It is very necessary to meet videographers in person to get a feel for their personalities, style and to watch a whole, full-quality wedding video. Many people can edit together a few good clips and make it look like they are good at what they do. What you will want to look for is a videographer who is able to shoot a whole wedding start to finish with limited mistakes and good sound quality (including capturing your vows!). Also, seeing a video on DVD or Blu-ray on a larger TV will give you a better idea for what your video will look like and you can decide if you like what you see. Meeting in person will help you gauge their videography style and ask questions face to face. It is hard to have all the answers on a website or even in an email or phone conversation. Meeting in person will help you feel like you are on the same page with all your vendors, we recommend meeting all of them face to face!

3. Know the Facts:
When you have chosen your videographer, make sure to get all the details. Go ahead, ask a lot of questions! The worst thing that could happen is if you get your wedding video back and it wasn’t nearly what you expected but then you realize that you just never asked about this or that. Make sure that you are on the same page with your vendors about every detail. This goes for all your vendors as well. This is your wedding and you want all the details to be the way you planned. Here are a few things you should ask your videographer about; how many hours will they be at your event, how many shooters will be there (this is important as 2 shooters is significantly better than 1 with video), what exactly does the package you are ordering include, how many DVDs or Blu-ray discs are they including, how much are extras, what is their style (and make sure to tell them what you are expecting your video to look like), how long after the wedding will you receive your video, and what type of equipment do they use.

4. Understand the Equipment:
Ask your videographer what type of equipment they use. If you don’t know much about video equipment, that’s fine, but here are a few things you should find out. Ask if they use high quality professional microphones that will hear the sound of both the bride, groom, officiant and the music. Ask if they shoot in High Definition (HD). Though receiving your video in HD (on Blu-ray discs) usually costs more, having your video shot on HD cameras and then burned to DVD will almost always look better than shooting on Standard Definition cameras. If you are getting your video delivered in HD, understand that it will cost a little bit more but it will also be more future proof. If you don’t have a Blu-ray player now, you might soon. Some videographers will also allow you to keep your video backed up on their computers for some time so you can also upgrade later to HD. You might even be able to have your video in both DVD and Blu-ray so make sure to ask if that is an option as well.

5. Have Fun!
Getting engaged is such a wonderful, exhilarating and overwhelming time and should be enjoyed to the fullest! All the planning and organizing is important for your wedding day but the most important thing is your marriage. Make sure to plan for time to spend together without talking about the wedding and having just some “us” time. Don’t let wedding planning consume you. The process can be stressful but it can also be a fun thing to do together. Just make sure to get some good quality time together and don’t let the little things bother you. If you’ve taken the time to choose good quality vendors you can trust, and friends and family to help out, the little things will fall into place. Remember, you can always ask your vendors for advice, we all know weddings and can refer you to other vendors or just help out with little details. Good luck and congratulations!

Monday, November 24, 2008

:: Tips from Experts ::

We have another round of helpful tips for you from the fabulous Mona of Weddings by Grace and Mona!

1) Enlist the services of a professional wedding planner as early in the planning process as possible. Your planner can point you in the right direction for just about all of your wedding related decisions and can bring unique and innovative ideas to the table so as to really personalize your special day. While certainly possible to proceed with much of the planning on your own, bringing on a planner early in the process will help to expand the realm of possibilities and ensure that decisions made are wise ones.

2) Understand that while Hawaii’s climate affords some of the most desirable weather year-round, it never hurts to be prepared for inclement conditions. For outdoor weddings, consider a “plan B” in case of a bit of rain. Many areas can be tented (and made even more spectacular with appropriate lighting and décor!), and often times, floral arrangements can be re-set at an alternate location, should a ceremony need to be moved to a more suitable spot at the last minute. Maintaining a positive attitude will make all the difference because on your special day, not even showers should put a damper on what the day is truly meant to be about: your love for and commitment to one another.

3) Consider your location when choosing colors for your wedding. Wedding colors that mimic the colors of the location lend themselves to a subtle, understated elegance, whereas contrasting colors provide a visual “pop,” great for photos. Choosing greens, browns, creams, and ivory tones for a garden setting, for example, create a soothing, cohesive look and feel to the whole setting, but sometimes, such colors can loose their impact if they blend too much into the background. For indoor receptions, take into account existing colors of walls, carpet, linen, etc.. Certain colors may work better than others for that particular setting, and if not, your wedding planner can suggest ways to transform the space to make your preferred colors an integral (and not competing) part of the design of your wedding.

4) If securing your first choice of venue and vendors is important, allow yourself 14-18 months to plan your wedding. Popular venues will get booked sometimes more than a year in advance, depending on the venue. Have your planner start researching options for you as soon as possible so as to lock in your preferred location and vendors.

5) Accommodate guests who may have challenges with mobility, such as those in wheelchairs; with strollers, walkers, crutches, or canes. Locate ramps and elevators in advance; seat such guests at tables which are easily accessible; and request that a guest or banquet staff member plate food for such guests in the case of a buffet or food station type of reception. Going the extra mile for your guests will ensure a memorable occasion for all.

Mona L. Hirata
Weddings by Grace and Mona
P.O. Box 2732
Honolulu, HI 96803
Phone: (808) 524-5331
Fax: (808) 524-4148

Friday, November 21, 2008

Featured Wedding :: November/December

We were contacted a while back by one of our readers interested in having her wedding featured on Elite Hawaii Weddings. After reviewing her photos, hearing her story, and speaking to a few of her vendors...we were sold :) This story is beautiful and romantic and I urge you to check it out on our featured wedding page.

Remember, we are consistently accepting featured weddings! Our only request is that one of the wedding professionals be an elite member of our community!

Happy Friday Everyone!!!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Featured Vendor :: November :: Katy Castillo

I am happy to announce that our featured vendor for November is the super fabulous Katy Castillo of Katy Castillo Weddings! She just joined our community and now you have the opportunity to learn more about her.

Featured vendor

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Introducing....Katy Castillo Weddings

I would like to welcome our newest member of the Elite Hawaii Weddings Community! Katy Castillo Weddings! Katy is an amazing coordinator with an eye for beauty and detail. You can learn more about her company on her private brochure page, or visit her website to learn more.

Katy, we are thrilled to have you part of our community!