Our 10th Anniversary Celebration Party – Pittsburgh
I am still completely feeling all the feels from our 10th anniversary celebration party a few weeks ago. If I’m honest, I’m feeling all the feels from celebrating our 10-year anniversary. I love love and I have always been one to make a big deal about our anniversary. I 100% believe you should celebrate it every year. It’s so important and truly the foundation for our family.
We normally have a tradition of taking whatever gift you are supposed to give each other for the year and put our own twist on that by turning it into a trip. For example, year 4 the gift was fruit so we went to Napa Valley because grapes are definitely fruit and we love wine! Anyway, this year was a little different and we wanted to celebrate this milestone in a big way. I tossed the idea of having an anniversary party out to Joey and he thought I was crazy. Maybe I am a little crazy, but the idea stuck with me and eventually he agreed.
Our 10th Anniversary Celebration Party
The party was a little different than I had originally envisioned with the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, so I had to make some adjustments like making it much smaller than I originally planned. We also took specific COVID-19 precautions, which I will go into detail below so our guests (and ourselves) felt comfortable. Despite these adjustments not being ideal, we had an incredible team of Pittsburgh vendors that truly made our anniversary party a night we will never forget.
Over the years of living in Pittsburgh, I’ve had the opportunity to get to know many of the vendors in the Pittsburgh wedding industry through various connections, events, etc. The Pittsburgh wedding industry is truly special. There is such love and respect that each of these vendors have for each other in the community, and it truly shows. What I’ve found is the wedding community is about collaboration over competition, and they are always willing to lend a helping hand to one another.
Let’s Meet Our Vendors
Julie Kahlbaugh Since I wouldn’t be able to share all these details with you without these beautiful photos, I thought I would introduce you to our extremely talented photographer, Julie. She’s been snapping photos for my blog for almost 5 years now.
Every photographer typically has a specific style of capturing photos, but what I love most about Julie is that she is very flexible in her style and always captures things in the way I envision.
Olive & Rose Events To hire an event planner or not? That’s a big question. I think one thing people don’t often know about event planning is the range of work these experts offer. You can get anything from a full event plan to as little as a day-of coordinator – and everything in between!
One of my good friends, Kim, owns Olive & Rose Events so I get a little inside scoop of where she spends her time and what people are wanting the most in an event planner. In fact, I even assisted her in some events earlier on in her business.
For me, I had a very specific vision for our anniversary party. I didn’t need a full plan; however, I really wanted some industry expertise and advice on vendors, rules of thumb, and best practices. After all, it had been 10 years since I planned something like this. I needed updated. Kim was able to help me and (being the friend that she is) listen to my stressful moments, too.
Olive & Rose Events also offers Day-of Coordination (a service I highly recommend) at a minimum. It’s 100% worth it! Mackenzie, a Lead Event Coordinator with Olive & Rose, stopped by around 1pm the day of our party. We had a few correspondences ahead of time to get her up to speed on the party plans, vendor information, and any specific requests I had for her to do. She went above and beyond my expectations. Having her take care of making sure the vendors arrived when they were supposed to and assisting them with any questions they had really took a lot of stress off me and allowed me to enjoy the day.
Oh Joyful Day One of the hardest decisions I had to make when we were planning our wedding 10 years ago were the invitations. I remember it being such a struggle for me, and I was honestly dreading this task, until I met Victoria, owner of Oh Joyful Day.
Victoria made the invitation design process as seamless as it gets. We set up a phone call to discuss what I was looking for and walked through some inspiration I had for an invitation. I opted for a full customized stationary design so I could tailor it to match my vision and have a consistent look for all our stationary throughout the party. This is something you can’t do with the pre-made invitations. Victoria took my inspiration and created a mood board for me to review. Once it was approved, she came up with the first design which was absolutely stunning. She completely got it, and from there we had just a few tiny tweaks and the final product was perfect.
Victoria is extremely talented and truly helped me take my vision and turn it into the perfect invitation for our event. There was not one guest that did not compliment the invitations when they received them in the mail.
Windswept Entertainment and Event Rentals One of the things I love so much about having my blog is connecting with my readers. I actually connected with Mary Linn, owner of Windswept, several years ago! We would message back and forth and eventually she told me about her rental company and The Barn at Maple Falls, a beautiful event venue outside of Pittsburgh.
Flash forward a few years later, Mary Linn and I have stayed in touch and I couldn’t think of anyone else I’d rather work with on rentals for our party. When I finally met Mary Linn in person, she greeted me with a big hug as if I’ve known her for years. I cannot tell you how much I enjoy this part of my job!
I had a very clear vision with what I wanted to do with the table setup. Mary Linn provided the beautiful, handmade farmhouse tables for a rustic feel but we added the modern acrylic chairs to mix the styles. We opted for elegant gold-rimmed glasses for the table settings and classic white napkins to match the place settings. We finished up the look with cocktail tables and a grey burlap looking linen. Arguably one of the most important parts were the propane heaters. They were so handy and kept all of our guests comfortable the whole evening.
Stems by Syd If there is one area that is worth a splurge, I would say spend it on the flowers! Floral arrangements can really take your event to the next level of elegance, and that’s what I was really looking for. I wanted our anniversary party to feel romantic and elegant.
Of course, when I started the planning process I hadn’t fully thought about how many flowers I would need. I would say I probably doubled what I was thinking in the first place! Thank goodness for Syd, as she was the absolute best in helping me narrow down everything I needed to make this event exactly what I was envisioning.
I actually met Syd early on in blogging when she first started her business. It’s been so fun watching her business flourish into what it is today. I was so excited to work with her once again!
If you are like me, I don’t know many names of flowers so I was able to just send her some inspo photos and she helped me narrow down exact stems that I would need. Syd also helped pick some alternative flowers that gave the same look, but were at a lower cost point. Syd was great!
Illume Lighting and Event Design Whenever I first came up with the idea of hosting an anniversary party, my immediate thought was to have a show-stopping light display. I took to Pinterest to see what I could come up with and fell in love with the idea of creating a light tunnel. Illume Lighting completely made magic happen beyond what I was expecting.
I spoke with Kristin and Chris, the Illume duo, so they could get a clear idea of what I was wanting for this tunnel. They were thrilled to work on this project. Setup took place the day before the event, and I couldn’t wait to see it completely lit. We had the party on a rather steep hill in our backyard which definitely gave us a few challenges, but Chris and Kristin didn’t even seem to mind. They handled them with ease and the lighting turned out perfectly. Chris also came up with this cute idea for lighting the ramp based on some bistro light inspo I sent him.
We learned that Chris has a ton of experience with lighting, but this duo also does event design as well to create beautiful atmospheres for your event including lighting, draping, and décor.
Our light tunnel completely set the mood for our anniversary celebration. I wanted it to be elegant and romantic, and Illume did just that!
Mediterra Bakehouse / Mediterra Cakehouse / Mediterra Café Yes, this family does it all and they do it all really well! Mediterra is, hands down, one of my favorite cafés in Pittsburgh. They offer fresh baked bread, prepared food, essentials for your home, delicious coffee, and really yummy lunch and breakfast foods. And don’t get me started on their sweets counter – chocolate croissants and cupcakes, oh my!
Joey and I love to order charcuterie usually for the two of us over the holidays. It’s always on point. Honestly, who doesn’t love a good charcuterie board?! We wanted to somehow incorporate a charcuterie in our anniversary celebration so we met with the team at Mediterra to see what they could come up with.
It was a complete and total showstopper and work of art. I actually cannot stop looking at these photos. The grazing table was the talk of the party. I even had to tell the guests it was okay to eat because they didn’t want to mess it up. However, once I did, it didn’t take long for everyone to dive in.
And we can’t forget the sweets. I knew it would be a little cooler in the evening so I thought it would be cute to do a little fire and some homemade s’mores. The key is the homemade part, which made these so special! Mediterra Cakehouse made the most delicious homemade marshmallows and homemade graham crackers. I have not stopped thinking about those graham crackers and neither have our guests. We had several people take some home because they were THAT good. I’m going to have to find a way to get some!
Old Souls Vintage Rentals One of the things I knew for sure about our anniversary celebration was that I wanted it to feel timeless and elegant. Olive and Rose Events told me about Old Souls and I completely fell in love. I couldn’t stop looking at their inventory imagining the perfect setup!
Kim and I sat up a call with Anni, the owner, and she knew my vision exactly from a 5-minute phone conversation. I was thrilled to work with her because I knew she was going to help me curate the perfect space, and she did! Her romantic furniture and unique pieces like the bar and wine barrel tables really took our event to the next level and gave me the dreamy vibe I was going for.
Tasty Bakery Fun Fact: Joey and I did not get to eat any of our wedding cake besides the bite we fed each other. That’s actually not fun – it’s tragic lol! 10 years later we are eating all the cake, especially when it’s from Tasty Bakery.
I tried one of Tasty Bakery’s cupcakes earlier this year at an event, and I was hooked ever since. Beverly, the owner, has the cutest shop where she meets with her clients and bakes her delicious cakes. Her team is crazy talented in their cake designs. I could look at their cakes all day long. Not only are they beautiful, they taste so yummy!
For our anniversary, we opted for a seasonal pumpkin spice and cinnamon cream cheese for one layer and the lemon cake with strawberry mousse. (I love lemon anything, so it’s always my first option!)
Joyce’s Jewelry We’ve been customers of Joyce’s since we were engaged. My ring and wedding band were both from there and I cannot recommend this place enough. We always have such a good experience working with Brandon and the entire staff at Joyce’s.
I went to college with my friend, Rachel, and also interned at the accounting firm she worked at as well. She was recently engaged at the time and I couldn’t help but admire how gorgeous her engagement ring was. She told me that her fiancé’s family owned a jewelry store in Uniontown and we haven’t looked back since.
Joyce’s made it incredibly easy to make that first big purchase of an engagement ring by giving us the knowledge and education we needed to get the highest quality diamond for our budget. We’ve had several friends go through Joyce’s to purchase engagement rings and other jewelry pieces, and I’m so happy to hear they’ve all had such a good experience like we did.
Let’s Meet My Glam Squad
Behind every woman is a Glam Squad hyping her up and making her feel the best she can! All the members of this Glam Squad are my people. These are my go-to businesses for regular services and special occasions. I trust these babes with my whole heart.
Blush Tan Pittsburgh I’ve been getting spray tans from Blush Tan Pittsburgh for over a year now. If I could get a spray tan every single week, I would! I love having a little color on my skin. It gives me life and confidence!
Hannah and Emma are two boss babes I’m so lucky to call my friends. I remember when they opened their first location of Blush Tan. They’ve been able to offer a spray tan service that is completely customizable. I’ve never left there looking orange. My color is always so natural looking and glowing. I LOVE it.
Tricia Corona – Makeup Artist Tricia has been doing my makeup for a few years now for special photo shoots or occasions. She is my go-to makeup girl. She is always up to speed on the latest makeup trends. Honestly, I usually never like how my makeup looks when someone else does it, until I met Tricia. And the best part, I’m pretty sure I laugh the entire time I’m with this girl! Now, if only I can learn how to do my contour the way she does.
The Skin Center The Skin Center prepped my skin with a dermaplane which removes all the dry skin and fuzz from my face. I love getting a dermaplane because it allows for a flawless makeup application. I paired it with Diamond Glow Facial to hydrate my skin and remove clogged pores so I could have that glowy, hydrated skin, fresh for our party.
J+V Studio This duo makes the perfect team and I love them so much! I started seeing Jerica at her old salon and I was thrilled when she told me she and Veronica would be opening their own space. Naturally, I followed.
Jerica always nails it with my color and cut every single time. I cannot recommend her enough. I always enjoy sitting in her chair and catching up on life with her.
Veronica is the queen of the perfect curls. I sent her a photo of some inspo and she did exactly what was I was wanting!
Polished I always get compliments on my nail designs when I’m out in public, and I’m always happy to point them to Polished if they are looking for a great manicure. Julia, the owner, always does my nails and she and her whole team do excellent work. I’ve had manicures and pedicures done by many of the girls at Polished and I’m always happy with how well they do. This time Ashley did my pedicure and her nail art is always on point.
Brittany Andrekovich – Salon Blanca I love having lash extensions. It’s so nice to just wake up in the morning and bam, I don’t need mascara or anything and I look fresh! Brittany has been doing my lashes for several years now and I’m always so happy with them! For our anniversary party, I wanted them to be a little more dramatic so she mixed in some longer lashes and added more for fullness.
The Lovely Glass Jar I love the neon sign trend I kept seeing all over Pinterest. “The Pletchers” (for example) was put on a super cute greenery wall or some sort of unique display. Since we had already been married for 10 years I wondered if I could do a little saying. I started a “love quote” search on Pinterest and found the perfect one: “It Was Always You.” I just got chills.
After searching on EtsyI and came across the cutest shop that makes custom neon signs, marquee letters, and other wedding signs. I reached out to Stephanie, the shop owner, and asked if she could create a custom sign with the quote from above, and she happily agreed! If I’m being honest, this was one of the pieces I couldn’t wait to get in and set up! The sign turned out beautifully and Stephanie was a dream to work with. You can really get creative with a cute display for your neon sign and make it conversation piece perfect for photos.
Party Unboxed If you remember from above, I mentioned Mackenzie from Olive & Rose Events who helped us with day of coordination. She also recently started her own business called Party Unboxed. It’s such a unique concept where you essentially get a party in a box! Each box is perfectly curated for all your small gathering needs. She also has things available for rent like this grid that came in handy ti display our sign.
No. 14 Boutique It should be no surprise that my favorite Pittsburgh boutique would appear on this list somewhere. No. 14 is the cutest boutique located in Lawrenceville. They specialize in trendy women’s clothing and fun accessories. Brianne, the owner, makes sure to cater to her brides each year by having a selection of white dresses perfect for bridal showers, engagement parties, or bachelorette parties.
For our anniversary party I stocked up on the Voluspa candles as part of the “Thank You” gift to all of the vendors we used. No. 14 Boutique has me hooked on this brand of candle. I’ve never smelled one I didn’t absolutely love. Since this was a Fall event, I bought the Spiced Pumpkin Latte, Santiago Huckleberry, and Baltic Amber. They are SO good!
Rizzy Home I knew there would be a relatively decent chance that the evening would be on the cooler side, so I thought having blankets available and placed on every other chair would really make our anniversary party look and feel cozy. These blankets served their purpose well! By the end of the evening most people had them wrapped around their shoulders or were cozied together on the couch. They were the perfect size snuggling and very reasonably priced.
Sweet Water Decor is another local Pittsburgh company I’ve had the pleasure of getting to work with over the years. It’s another company that I’ve loved watching them grow and flourish into the successful female owned business it is today.
Sweet Water Decor always has the cutest coffee mugs, home decor, and the most heavenly smelling candles. I know our event was outside, but having the scent of the candles around really helped create that cozy, fall vibe I was going for. We also opted for these adorable glass bottles for hand sanitizer (because COVID so we made it cute!) I know the holidays are right around the corner and these items make for the best gifts! In fact, we also purchased some of the campfire mugs for Thank You gifts for our vendors we used.
Penn Avenue Fish Company Penn Avenue Fish Company is by far my favorite place to get sushi. There is no place like it. Their fish is always the freshest. I love stopping by and ordering takeout and also picking up fresh fish for dinner later in the week at their market.
Their restaurant is casual and consistently delicious, but I didn’t know they catered, too. I reached out to PAFC and they immediately responded with the perfect menu based on some of the items I was wanting. We opted for a few passed hors d’oeuvres – an ahi poke, a caprese bruschetta, and tequila lime shrimp skewer. For our salad, we did an autumn salad that had sweet potato chips on top and I can’t stop thinking about it. For our entrée, we gave our guests the option of filet and lobster or a chicken dish, both of which were phenomenal. I would have them cater again just to get that lobster! Our guests raved about the food and I couldn’t have been happier.
Burgh Brides If you are planning a Pittsburgh wedding or event, Burgh Brides is your go-to resource. I cannot tell you how many times I utilized this blog throughout the planning process of our anniversary celebration. It has every style and type of wedding you are looking for and so much inspiration. One of my favorite features is the inspo tab where you filter by whatever it is you are looking for: boho style, bouquets, etc. Such a good, quick reference tool.
You’ll also find everything from a complete vendor guide for Pittsburgh to articles like, “How Should I Tip my Vendors” (an article I used as well). Burgh Brides also has been working hard to bring the latest on COVID weddings and give you alternatives as we are navigating this crazy year together.
I don’t know about you, but I think we should do this every year! I’m pretty sure Joey might not go for that, but our 10th Anniversary celebration party was truly a night we won’t forget. I’m definitely up for reliving it through these photos any day of the year. Maybe our 15th or 20th Anniversary will be the next!