August Feature: Hello Bride

Can you believe this summer is almost over? I’m sad to see summer come and go so fast, but I’m not sad to see this heat go away.  This month I am excited to feature Hello Bride. Jennifer and I crossed paths through the wedding industry world and they have some great products and planning tools for brides. Not only do they offer planning services, but they have some awesome tangible goods. You know so you can actually write things down for those of you who still love writing everything in notebooks! See our interview and their products below:

How did Hello Bride start?

We started planning weddings professionally a little over 5 years ago. Our favorite brides are always the ones we work beside. We love the ladies who really want to be a part of designing an amazing and unique event. That being said, when you are doing it yourself sometimes money is tight.

We have meet with a number of brides who we love but that just could not afford quality wedding planning help. We knew we wanted to create something affordable that would show them how to start planning their wedding quickly. That is when our wedding starter kit, Three Rings and A Checklist, was born. Two years ago we changed our name to Hello Bride and began focusing on wedding planning tools exclusively. We make planning your wedding fun and simple with checklists, notepads, binders and other wedding planning goodies. We absolutely love it!

What products do you have to offer brides?

Currently there are 10+ wedding planning tools in our product line. Each one is designed with our brides in mind. Our customized wedding starter kit is our most popular wedding planning tool. It makes a great engagement gift. Since, you can add the bride and groom’s names and wedding date to the front of the binder. It has made its way across the US, Australia, Europe and even places like Greece and Andorra. Our little pad for big wedding ideas made its debut at New York Fashion Week last year. Our newest wedding tool is our I Do, To Do. Do not let its size fool you. This little guy is packed full of wedding planning greatness. It is the quintessential wedding checklist you can fit in your purse. We truly believe wedding planning should be fun and simple.

What makes your products different from other wedding planning products available to brides?

Our products stand out for a few reasons. We really know who we are and what we stand for. We love our brides! We love designing honest, accessible and creative tools that help plan their wedding day.

We strive to stay current. Some wedding books imply you must be an expert at everything to plan a wedding. We firmly believe this is not true. Which is why we do not make you read a novel before you start planning your wedding. Let’s get started. Today!

We are real and we listen. Our brides want to be able to customize and make things their own. We choose a 3 ring binder for our wedding starter kit because it allows our brides to add their own items. Our brides care about their community just as much as we do. We use recycled materials whenever possible. All but one of our products is made here in the USA and printed locally in Kansas.

What services does your company offer?

Our main focus is awesome wedding planning tools. But . . . keep your eyes peeled. We do plan to start adding in more advice later this year. We are truly excited to be reworking the Hello Bride blog. It has been great being able to shift our focus to our brides and topics they will love. We may even try out a video tutorial or two in the near future. So excited!!!

How are your brides unique?

In the past year or so there has been a shift back to the handmade and artisanal. Wedding planning has become oh so technical. Our brides are pushing back. They are the brides who have shelves filled with colored pens and washi tape. They love the real-life tangible paper, pens and pencils. They want checklists, timelines, and step-by-step instructions they can hold in their hands, and we couldn’t agree more. Sigh. Wedding planning as it should be.

Meet the Hello Bride Team!

Photo by:

Photo by:

May Feature: Madison Sanders Events

This month I bring you one talented wedding coordinator: Madison Sanders with Madison Sanders Events.  Wedding coordinators are so important in your wedding planning process, so when I sat down with Madison she told me what made her stand out in the wedding industry.


Tell us about yourself and your company, Madison Sanders Events.

First and foremost, I am passionate about strong marriages, the legacy of family and good ‘ol southern hospitality. I began in the wedding industry in Dallas/Fort Worth before moving back to my hometown of Kansas City and marrying my true love, Bret. My industry experience, perfected planning processes and creative direction allow my clients to relax and enjoy their engagements to the fullest while looking forward to a beautiful wedding day.

Madison Sanders Events is a full-service planning and design company specializing in weddings and events in Kansas City. We create beautiful celebrations that showcase your unique love story. Our team will help bring your story to life by helping you select the perfect venue and stunning floral and stationery concepts, crafting your food and beverage menus, hiring top-notch entertainment, and recommending incredible photographers and videographers to capture each memory. With our customized planning process, you are able to relax and enjoy every bit of your engagement from the “Will you marry me?” to the “I do!”

How would you describe the typical MSE couple?

Our clients are anything but typical…and we don’t mean to brag, but we do believe we work with some of the best couples in Kansas City! Aside from being madly in love with one another, our clients are young professionals enjoying active and on-the- go lifestyles with very little time to dedicate to the intricate logistics and research that planning brings. They value family and friendships.  They desire to create an event that is not only a perfect reflection of their love story, but also an environment in which their guests feel comfortable and well taken care of. They know that the finer details count and that this one day is a celebration of something bigger than themselves…it is a celebration of two families, two stories and two legacies joining together to create a brand new family, story and legacy that is uniquely their own.

What advice do you give to brides and grooms preparing for the wedding day?

Savor your season of engagement. It is not something meant to be stressful or something to be rushed through. There is so much learning and growing that takes place during this time that will prepare you for your life together. Allow your family to participate in your planning process (this is an exciting time for them as well!), but don’t be afraid to make your day your own.

Kansas City’s Family Photographer {Chou Family}

It’s always intimidating to shoot another photographers session.  Sarah is an amazing family and newborn photographer in Lenexa Kansas with an in home studio. She has so many fun props and backdrops and people are always in line for her mini sessions. Sarah shot my maternity pictures which I am in love with.  I loved capturing her family in downtown Kansas City and her sweet sweet girl Emma.  Everyone was all giggles the whole time, including her husband!  So sweet!  I love meeting photographers that are so humble and have real talent. Sarah is defiantly one of those people and I can’t wait to bring my little one into her studio in the future. Enjoy!

Sal Cincotta 2 day Workshop {St. Louis Missouri} Wedding Photography

I think as a business owner and as an artist, it is so important to continue to grow and educate yourself. If you don’t stay on top of your game your business shows it.  Personally I am always trying to push myself to be better. Innovating new ideas and new concepts keeps me going.  Also I feel like my clients deserve that too. WHY book me if I’m not doing anything special or cool or different.  A group of my photographer friends decided to hijack Sal and Taylor for a private 2 day workshop for us.  The first day we spent shooting, which was great. We did some drills to help push us, plus seeing things in a different way. I can honestly say that it changed my way of shooting and how I think about my subjects and the frame and where I am standing. Second day was all business as we went over marketing, sales and business growth. Such a motivating workshop. Sal is great at showing you how you can obtain your goals and make things happen that you never thought were possible.  Big thanks to Sal, Taylor and Alyssa!  See you at Shutterfest in April.

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Pond Photography Studio Opening

I am so excited that Pond Photography has taken the next step to opening our own studio. We have partnered with Rob Garza with ARGEE Design and could not be more happy.  I have been looking long and hard for the perfect little place and the perfect partner.  Luckily I found both and it all just fell into place. We got possession of the studio in February and started one month of working and getting it ready for our opening in March.  I love how it came together. For the open house we had such a great turn out and shoutouts to a couple people for helping with our opening:

Catering: Expressive Catering

Cupcakes: Sweet Perfections

Flowers: Roses Only







Copyright © 2014 Pond Photography KansasCityWeddingPhotographer_0002 Copyright © 2014 Pond Photography KansasCityWeddingPhotographer_0004 KansasCityWeddingPhotographer_0005 KansasCityWeddingPhotographer_0006 KansasCityWeddingPhotographer_0007 KansasCityWeddingPhotographer_0008 KansasCityWeddingPhotographer_0009 KansasCityWeddingPhotographer_0010 Copyright © 2014 Pond Photography

OPEN HOUSE: Thank you to Janie Jones Photography for all these photos.

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Shutter Fest 2014

I very first saw Sal Cincotta speak at hotel in Kansas City. I was still working my full time job. He totally spoke my language and I thought the man was a genius.  I remember telling him how how scared I was to take the leap. Boy am I glad I implemented what he taught me and did it. I love my life and what I do now.  I wouldn’t change it for the world!  Sal introduced the idea of “Shutter Fest” A free conference for photographers with speakers, hands on experience and fun with other photographers. Shoot. Learn. Party. That was the motto and boy did we do all three!  We took a chance and signed up to go and it was a great experience. So glad we were part of the “freshman class” Shutter Fest 2015 is already on the books and it’s just going to get bigger and better.

What is Shutter Fest?

Shutter Fest was two days of photography classes, speakers, workshops, hands on shooting, vendors and of course partying! I have been to plenty of photography workshops and get together in the past. This was different. Everyone checked their ego at the door.  All the speakers really cared about helping you and getting to know you.  Sal and Taylor took the time to talk to everyone, be at the workshops with us and partied with us.  They are such a great team and put on an amazing conference. Can’t wait for Shutter Fest 2015!


Why go?

As a photographer I think its so important to keep your self up to date on new techniques and products. You can always learn something new no matter how long you have been in this business.  It’s also refreshing and inspiring being around so much amazing talent.  I always want to grow my business and keep innovating.  It’s up to me to keep my clients happy, bring them new stuff and keep new clients  coming in the door. Innovate or die!


Learning from Roberto Valenzuela


Shooting live models. Practicing everything we learned and trying new things!

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Getting set up with Evolve Edits. So excited!!



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Sal let us come visit his amazing studio!


And finally we decided to put what we learned into action. Now introducing FUSION. A little photo, a little video, a little being silly, but a whole lot of fun!






Bearing all elements {Behind the scenes}

Being a wedding photographer is one of the greatest jobs I could ask for. There are so many challenges on a wedding day and every wedding is different. I get this question almost every wedding: “What if it rains? What if it snows? What will we do?”  My answer: “Trust me, we will make it work.” You can not control the weather on your wedding day and when mother nature throws curve balls at me I make the best out of them.  Adam and Christy’s wedding was a true test of how a true professional handles the task at hand. We started out with cold weather but no rain and no snow. Here is a couple behind the scenes of the first part of the day.

Behind the scenes of a wedding photographer, snowy wedding, winter wedding

Everyone remember the snow blizzard we had at the end of this March? Yes, that happened on Adam and Christy’s wedding day. This whole wedding party had such a good attitude and we totally rocked this blizzard. It’s so important to have this sort of attitude on your wedding day, because you can not control the weather. There is almost always something that does not go according to plan on a wedding day. If you know that going into it, your pictures will truly show it afterwards. Thank you to Allie for capturing all these behind the scene photos.

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WPPI 2013 – Las Vegas

WPPI is a wedding and portrait photography conference + expo.  It is the largest annual convention and trade show for photographers, held at the MGM Grand Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada. When I was first starting my photography career, I heard of this conference. I thought to myself…one day I will make it to this. I had heard so many fabulous things. It is so surreal that I did make it to this conference earlier in March.  I was really there and it shows how far I have come. Almost had to pinch myself! I was chasing a dream and I caught it. It just goes to show that if you push yourself and believe in yourself you can make all things possible.  So the planning for the trip began and I wound up in the MGM Signature suites with 7 other girls who I could not of found more amazing. I got to know them all that week along with crazy class schedules, amazing speakers, pool time, parties, shootouts, meeting new people, the desert, secret pizza places and more! My head is still spinning from everything I learned. Trying to take it all in.

My biggest take backs from WPPI 2013:

Staying with 7 people I barely knew and loving them all by the end of the week!

Reaching out to Nikki Closser and spending time with her. She is an amazing person and I am so glad I met her and can not wait for our paths to cross again.

Attending the Victor Sizemore shoot out and the Madera Books party that night. I love how humble Victor is and even though we only spent one day together, I feel like he is so genuine I could call him for anything. Met some amazing people in this group.

The awards show is amazing and you should not miss it!

Shooting in the desert at Red Rocks Canyon. Hiking in flats and bare feet, just trying to get “the shot”

Red Rocks Canyon Shoot Out

Las Vegas Nevada

Victor Sizemore Shoot Out

Photo Credits listed below photos

Las Vegas Strip, Las Vegas Nevada

The Palms Penthouse, Las Vegas Nevada

Shoot Credits:

Victor Sizemore Photography

Renee Delsigne – Stylist

Amelia Cline-Cooper – Hair and Make-up


Sarah Scott

Danielle Wyszomirski