Happy Thanksgiving!

We at The Finishing Touch would like to wish you all a wonderful Thanksgiving and thank you for all you do in allowing us to do what we love; plan amazing events for amazing people.  We are truly thankful for all of you.  We wish the best to you and your families.

The Team at The Finishing Touch Wedding and Event Planning

Hill Country Barbecue

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Earlier this year, we had the opportunity to attend an industry event at Hill Country Barbecue in New York City.  Right as we entered, the tone for the evening was set with the big lone-star on the sign above the door and friendly greeters in cowboy hats awaited us.  We were escorted down the wooden steps into a nice big room with long wooden tables.  A true country band was playing on the stage and together it created a nice relaxed atmosphere, a nice change from the trendy, posh New York scene ~ in fact,  we almost forgot we were still in the city!

To kick off the evening, we were offered fresh margaritas and homemade guacamole, both of which were excellent.  We were then invited to the BBQ buffet where the amount of food truly blew us away.  From barbecue chicken to spare ribs, vegetables and dessert; we didn't know where to start.  The chicken and ribs were fabulous followed by the cornbread served with maple butter. YUM!  We were very pleased with the meal and the concept. 

As we sat with other wedding and event planners, we all raved about the food and how we could incorporate this type of restaurant into our events.  Definitely a cool spot for a rehearsal dinner. More importantly we learned that night that they also do catering, so they can bring Texas to you!  Whether it's for a wedding, a rehearsal dinner or even a festive birthday, Hill Country can definitely bring a unique and affordable meal.  If the country band is a little too much, they offer country music cd's as well.  To ensure you get the true Texan ambiance at your party you can incorporate picnic tables with gingham table cloths, wooden chairs, mason jars, butcher block serving counters and much more. 

As we left for the night, we were handed cute baskets filled with goodies, from candied pecans to a bottle of Hill Country's own barbecue sauce.  We have both used ours at home, and everyone loves it!   We're so happy we had the chance to attend this event and get a feel for Hill Country Texas.  If you ever have a chance to have dinner there, we highly recommend it!

Happy Planning, 

Leah and Candice

Celebration Studios Photos & Videos now available

We learned this weekend of a new update in the Celebration Studios bankruptcy situation which left thousands of couples without their wedding photographs and videos ~ and there seems to be a happy ending.  The NJ Consumer Affairs department has seized all products in the Celebration Studios warehouse and have started to release the pictures and videos. 

Brides and Grooms who have not yet received their memories can file a complaint online at njconsumeraffairs.gov or call 800-242-5846 to make an appointment to pick them up in Newark.

To read more check out the latest from The Star Ledger:  http://www.nj.com/starledger/stories/index.ssf?/base/news-12/1227417469161150.xml&coll=1

We hope you find this information helpful.

All the best,  

Candice

Charity Walks

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A few months ago my friend and I thought it would be fun to sign up for a couple of charity walks in New York City. We chose to raise money for both the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation and the Alzheimer’s Association. Our friends and family contributed to our fund raiser which allowed us to be able to walk in October.

 

Sunday morning, October 12th, my friend and I trekked into the Bronx (getting a little lost on the way!) and headed into the Bronx Zoo. I thought this was a great location for a charity walk as it was entertaining for people of all ages. We checked in, enjoyed the live entertainment, received a t-shirt and ate breakfast. At 11 AM the gates opened to us and we were free to roam the zoo all day! They even gave us passes to all the rides and exhibits. Heather and I took our time visiting the many different animals they have and even got to learn about some of their lifestyles. It was very rewarding to walk around and pass so many fund raising teams wearing matching t-shirts, some indicating who they were walking for. Many smiles, waves and cheers were exchanged throughout the day. Although it wasn't a mapped-out route, Heather and I were exhausted at the end of the day, figuring we had probably walked at least six miles.

Our second walk was even more close to my heart.  In memory of my grandfather, we walked in Riverside Park in Manhattan on Sunday, October 27 for the Alzheimer Association. Upon arrival we were handed our t-shirts for raising at least $100. We enjoyed music, breakfast and an opening ceremony with guest speakers including Bill Ritter of ABC-TV. At 11 AM sharp, the 2-mile walk commenced and people of all ages, some joined by their dogs, joined in the charity walk. Heather and I power- walked our 2 miles and crossed the finish line together.

Signing up as a group to raise money for charities can be a great alternative for a bachelorette party. Creating a team to raise money for a charity of the bride's choosing can be very rewarding and gives a great sense of camaraderie. The day-of the walk, the group of girls can all wear matching t-shirts that you make together as a group-either announcing you are part of the bridal party, or 'in memory' of anyone who was affected by the disease. Be sure to make a day of it by getting there early to enjoy the activities, music and breakfast.  After the walk you can all go to lunch together at a great restaurant to celebrate your accomplishment. It really is a great way to bring people together when you are all there for a combined cause and the best part is that while having a blast you are able to raising money for a great cause.

 

For more information, you can visit the following sites:

 

Alzheimer’s website: http://nycmw08.kintera.org/faf/home/default.asp?ievent=273214&lis=1&kntae273214=79BE1DC89F5E4AF79DCE5F65AB530DAF

 

Diabetes website: http://www.jdrf.org/

 

Charity Navigator:

http://www.charitynavigator.org/?gclid=CP2buPit2ZYCFQOeFQodU3F-3Q

 

Have a great day,

 

Nikki

 

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Jayme & Nick: An Autumn Affair

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On a perfect crisp Fall morning, the bridesmaids all convened at the Nardi residence with hair and makeup done and began to toast Jayme, the Bride. As we greeted the florist, photographers and videographer upon their arrivals, the girls continued to enjoy mimosas and bagels together.

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When the time came to get dressed, the bridesmaids slipped on their long espresso brown gowns, along with ivory elbow-length gloves, a gift from the Bride. Jayme then put on her beautiful gown complete with 50 white buttons down the back.   

 

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The ladies then made their way to the church in an Escalade, followed by Jayme and her parents in a vintage Rolls Royce.  The church was decorated in-season, with autumn mum plants on the altar, white bows on the pews and fall leaves sprinkled down the aisle by the flower girl.

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With an all-white bouquet in hand, Jayme was escorted down the aisle by her father, to the Schiller Quartet playing ‘Eleanor Rigby’.  The ceremony went beautifully, complete with a unity candle lighting and parent recognition with a single rose. Upon the conclusion, the couple exited down a red carpet, through a sea of bubbles.

 

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While the couple and bridal party took photos at the church, The Finishing Touch was busy decorating the reception site, The Manor in West Orange, New Jersey. With miniature pumpkins as place card holders and carved pumpkins with the couple’s initials, the cocktail lounge truly emulated an Autumn wedding.

 

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Once guests were invited into the Imperial Room, each bridal party couple was introduced by Dash of Class DJ Entertainment to their own song personally picked by the Bride and Groom. Just before the Bride and Groom were announced, a photomontage played, highlighting funny and cute baby pictures of the Bride and Groom. The couple entered to Love Shack and proceeded into their choreographed first dance. An elaborate and fun dance, the couple kept guests’ eyes on them as they danced to ‘Can’t Take My Eyes Off of You’.

 

Keeping with their Autumn theme, the reception was decorated with brown linens and gorgeous Manzonita tree centerpieces complete with leaves, autumn florals and amber votives from Bill O'Sheas Florist. 

 

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Creative pumpkin carvings were illuminated to show designs of a Bride and Groom as well as Jayme and Nick’s names and wedding date.    

 

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Dinner consisted of a 4-course meal hand picked by the couple, complete with a Viennese sampler dessert dish, as well as a canoli-filled 4-tiered wedding cake. For a personal touch, the Bride had the cake-topper customized to look like both herself and her Groom!

 

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The night was full of dancing and celebration, with toasts from both the Maid of Honor and Best Man as well as an emotional Father of the Bride. 

 

As they left for the evening, guests were given personalized miniature wine bottles with a personalized thank you from Jayme and Nick.  

 

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This very special day was captured by Magique Studios Photography and Classic Video Productions

 

 

Best Wishes,

 

Nikki, Candice, and Soroya

 

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