Wedding Wednesday: The Fluker Wedding

The Fluker Wedding

April 26, 2016

Photography by: Pat Cori Photography

Sarah White and Thomas “Ray” Fluker met in their early years, as students at Roanoke College. They had a class together, but didn’t spend much time with one another during their time at school. Thanks to social media they were able to stay connected after gradution, and after ten years, two career changes, and a couple of gentle denials on Sarah’s end, the two found themselves both in the same place at the same time. Back in Salem, the two of them got together for dinner at a Roanoke College staple, followed by a walk through campus, which landed the couple at a set of rocking chairs, where they sat and talked for hours. Ray and Sarah would revisit these rocking chairs when he asked her to spend the rest of her life with him, to the tune of “Question” by the Old 97.

The two wanted their wedding day to be romantic, classic, and fun. The event began with a beautiful ceremony at the Taubman, with rose petals lining the aisles. The ceremony paid tribute not only to their love, but also to Sarah’s parents. Sarah wore a piece of her mother’s wedding dress, sewn into her own, and she wore the pearls that her father had gifted her mother on their first wedding anniversary.

The reception was held on the roof of the Center in The Square, where they enjoyed each other, their friends, and their family, with a delightful variety of southern comfort food, such as chicken and waffles, mac and cheese, and lemonade. Sarah’s and Ray’s favorite part of the night was standing on that roof top surrounded by their friends and family.

Their wedding was a romantic celebration of love and friendship. The perfect evening, starting with a classic ceremony, and ending with a fun roof-top party with the perfect view to start the rest of their lives together. A view they can look back on for years to come. As a surprise for Sarah, Ray set up for a drone to capture video and photographs of the reception. This was a guest favorite, and sure to be a fun way to revisit their wedding in the years to come.

Make sure to see more of the Fluker Wedding on page 40 of bridebook!

Dress: Becky’s Bridal

Florist: Creative Occasions

Cake: Copper Hill Cakes and Cookies

Ceremony: Taubman Museum of Art

Venue: Center in the Square

Planner: Simplicity

DJ: RSP Entertainment

Attendant Dresses: Becky’s Bridal

Groomsmen Attire: Black Tux

Videographer: Michael’s Video

Drone: Autonomous Flight Technologies, Inc.

Hair & Makeup: Lex Cheveux Salon & Day Spa

Lighting: Lighting Ninja, Inc.

Ice Sculpture: Masterpiece Ice Sculptures

Harpist: Karlee Lanum

Roanoke Wedding Crawl Hosts Real Wedding!

 Roanoke Wedding Network Hosts Real Wedding at 4th Annual “Wedding Crawl”

On Sunday, April 3, the Roanoke Wedding Network will host the fourth annual Wedding Crawl, with all proceeds supporting the programs and services provided by the Roanoke Valley SPCA to homeless animals and those in need in our community. In addition, there will be a live wedding to take place in one of the five venues, incorporating a real, local couple and their guests into the event.

The Roanoke Wedding Crawl is a unique bridal show experience for Roanoke where five prominent downtown venues are setup as actual wedding receptions, with the help from local wedding vendors to showcase their businesses to future brides. Venues will feature caterers, cake bakers, florists, lighting experts, photographers, photo booths, DJs, wedding planners, dress shops, salons and so much more. Brides are encouraged to come hungry, as the caterers are ready to feed attendees. Attendees can walk to each venue, though transportation will also be available.

Venues include Center in the Square, Patrick Henry Ballroom, Taubman Museum of Art, Blue 5 – The White Room, and Charter Hall. More than 50 vendors will be participating to showcase their services and products to future brides and grooms. Attendees will have opportunities to talk at length with vendors, sample food and wedding cakes, get a mini manicure and updo, as well as win fantastic prizes such as a submission in bridebook magazine amongst many others. As the main sponsor, AmRhein’s Fine Jewelry will offer a gift certificate to their store for a grand prize winner.

The date of the event is Sunday, April 3, 2016, from 1:00pm to 5:00pm (rain or shine). Registration will be open from 12:00pm-2:00pm. Guests may purchase tickets in advance for $15. Tickets will also be sold at the door for $25.

Since October 2013, the Roanoke Wedding Network has donated approximately $9,090 to the Roanoke Valley SPCA. All proceeds from the Roanoke Wedding Crawl ticket sales are donated to the Roanoke Valley SPCA. It’s a partnership that brides seem to love!

Tickets may be ordered through the Roanoke Valley SPCA website. The deadline to order in advance is April 1, 2016.

Registration will be held from 12:00pm-2:00pm at the Roanoke City Market Building. RVSPCA is providing volunteers to staff the registration areas. At registration, guests will each be given a goody bag and map of the different venues participating as well as their starting venue. Once guests leave their first assigned venue, they may visit other participating venues at their leisure.

Find out more about the Roanoke Wedding Network or see the Wedding Crawl event on Facebook.



Rustic vs. City Weddings (Photo Gallery)

Whether you’re a bride who has dreamed about her wedding day for as long as you can remember or a surprise engagement has just now got you thinking about it, one of the first things a new bride must do is consider her venue options. One important question is whether you’d like your ceremony and/or reception indoors or outdoors, as well as if you’d prefer a rustic theme or perhaps more urban. Using a few photos from our third issue, we’re showcasing a handful of great ways you can get exactly what you want out of your preferred venue.

Rustic Settings

If getting married outside is a dream come true, rustic venues always have tons of great ways to help you celebrate the big day. Couples can incorporate an older well-cared for getaway car that brings us back to days on grandpa’s farm (1); rustic interiors such as stone walls and exposed wooden beams lend to the vibe (2); hand-built altars really bring a rustic beauty to your ceremony (3); cakes can also be pulled into the theme using different materials or hand-carved toppers (4); table settings with wildflowers and more natural outside elements can be stunning (5); and of course, taking time for outdoor photos in a gorgeous setting will really pull together the great outdoors for you (6)!

City Scapes
Want to get married in your favorite city? There are always lots of options for venues, as well as ways to really play on the cityscape. For example, a cool car ride through downtown with the big, bright lights will add to the urban flair (1); gorgeous tables that use fabric, bling, and big centerpieces let you know you’re dining in downtown style (2); iconic spots such as the city market (3), the Mill Mountain Star in Roanoke (4), or the glass walking bridge from downtown to Hotel Roanoke (5) will immediately let guests know where your wedding took place; and we especially love bringing your loyalty of your alma mater into your wedding within the college town (6), which sure, might not necessarily be in the city, but is typically within easy driving distances and easy for guests to find, plus has a special place in your happy heart!

Our 2014 Issue Cover Reveal!

We are beyond excited to finally release our 2014 issue – and it’s been tough keeping the cover a secret from you! That’s why we’re so happy to show you our gorgeous new cover featuring bride Chelsey Craft with her new husband Jared. (Their wedding story can be found on page 40.) To celebrate, we had an amazing party and have lots of photos and video to share with you soon. Keep an eye out for those on the website next week but for now, it’s our pleasure to present you the cover of the 2014 bridebook!

bridebook 2014

Our 2014 Cover featuring Jared and Chelsey Craft

Help Us Celebrate the 2nd Issue at our Launch Party!

We are SO excited to announce that our second issue is almost done! (Hooray!) We are blown away by the beautiful images and inspiration you’ll get from real brides and local vendors in your area. You simply MUST come to our launch party to help us celebrate the new issue of bridebook!

On Thursday, March 27th, from 6-9 pm, we’ll party it up at Charter Hall in downtown Roanoke with food, drinks, prizes, and more. Tickets are $25 each and include food from Center Stage Catering, cupcake favors from Viva La Cupcake, music by RSP Entertainment, party photos by William Mahone Photography, a fun photo booth with Star City Photobooth, gorgeous setup with help from Aztec Rental, AND local wine from Chateau Morrisette!

Even more exciting? We’ll do a very special cover reveal at 7:30pm and hand out our new issue to everyone there! Plus you’ll have a chance to win great prizes from photographers, restaurants, salons, and even a rock wall climbing gym!

We’re going to get decked out in our favorite pretty dresses and heels – what girl doesn’t love to get all dolled up? Wedding vendors will be in attendance too, so you’ll have a a chance to connect with them in a laidback atmosphere without the pressure of a typical bridal show.

This is your official invitation – click on the invite to purchase your tickets. It’s first come, first serve for up to 350 people, with an RSVP date of March 14th, so make sure to get your tickets ASAP! And YES, bring your husbands, fiancees, moms, bridesmaids, or anyone else who would love to attend! We can’t wait to dance the night away with all of you!

bridebook launch party invitation


We are so excited for an upcoming event in Roanoke: Bride’s Night!! Created by Caroline LaRocca Design, this event will take place on March 7th, from 6.30-9.30pm at the Patrick Henry Ballroom! You can go ahead and buy tickets here and we also recommend RSVPing to the event page on Facebook (see the official Facebook page here) to keep up with all the great vendors and other things going on!


Here’s more information from the official press release:

Roanoke, VA & New York, NY – Caroline LaRocca Event Design, a full service event design company providing fresh floral design, unique rentals, lighting, and event planning has created a new concept… BRIDE’S NIGHT! The first one will be March 7th, 2014 from 6:30 PM to 9:30 PM (PST) – Roanoke, VA.

After observing numerous bridal shows with ho hum ambiance, high pressure vendors, and grooms being dragged around, Caroline created a a concept event for brides and their BFFS (moms, maids, friends)…leave the guys at home!

Wedding planning should be FUN. It’s a once in a lifetime event…the ceremony and party of all parties. Why not have FUN planning it?
And this 70 BILLION dollar industry is no joke. Vendors want a forum where they can sell their goods and services to brides in a luxurious, relaxed and fun atmosphere and where brides can feel like they will feel at a real wedding.

We’re providing that!

BRIDE’S NIGHT! provides:

  • A customized state of the art registration experience…greeters, four queues, and digital check in with vendors receiving real time contacts they can greet at their booths.
  • NYC style runway shows (i.e., NO obnoxious ANNOUNCING!)
  • Four REAL brides chosen to be made over, styled, and walk the runway
  • Live music (a HOT harpist and a HOT violinist playing the likes of Lady Gaga and Katy Perry…), a DJ mashing up all the tracks we love, and an Appalachian Celtic Band playing during registration.
  • No annoying door prize announcements…instead, male models flicking 100 of garters off the balcony (20 of them with the winning prizes)
  • Sumptuous hors d’oeuvres by First & Sixth, and a cash bar with specialty drinks and lots of champagne.
  • Ballroom designed like a real wedding reception, with 6 different table design looks, of course, including the Pantone color of 2014, RADIANT ORCHID!
  • The most unique vendors that our committee has hand selected, including vintage rentals, a boudoir photographer, spa services and many more.
  • Garland Gravely of Fashionista Roanoke will host the fashion component of the show.

Easy ticket purchase through Event Brite, and ALL ticket proceeds go to BETHANY HALL, Where A Woman Can Turn Here Life Around.


save the date: bridebook launch party!

Celebrate our 2nd issue, see the new cover, win prizes, and more!

We are so excited to finally announce our big news: we are hosting an AMAZING launch party to celebrate the second issue of bridebook! On Thursday, March 27th, from 6-9 pm, we’ll party it up at Charter Hall in downtown Roanoke with food, drinks, prizes, and more. We’ve got wonderful sponsors who will help us make this the party of the year!

Even more exciting? We’ll do a very special cover reveal at 7:30pm and hand out our new issue!

We’re going to get decked out in our favorite pretty dresses and heels – what girl doesn’t love to get all dolled up? And this isn’t just for the beauties in the magazine, either – brides-to-be are also cordially invited to get a copy of the magazine, meet wedding vendors, and celebrate their upcoming nuptials with us.

This is your official Save the Date card – to receive your digital invitation, please sign up for our newsletter (on our website, top right) and keep an eye out on your inbox! We can’t wait to celebrate with you, it’s going to be a ball!

bridebook save the date

guest post: How to Plan Your Engagement Session

Guest Post by William Mahone (William Mahone Photography)

William Mahone Photography

William Mahone Photography

A lot of my clients have questions about their engagement pictures. So, I want to share some information, so you can best plan with your photographer to get memories you will always treasure.

Engagement sessions are a great way for photographers to get a chance to work with you pre-wedding. We will learn how you interact with the camera, and share tips and ideas for poses. Then on your wedding day, you will have more confidence and comfort with the camera.

When I photograph clients for the first time, I always like to explain how these photos are for the couple you will be in the coming years. Pictures that your whole family will love to have in their homes. We can also discuss what kind of invitations and announcement ideas you may have.

So what are some of the considerations for your photos?

– What to Wear –

Normally there is a bit of walking, sitting and standing. Wear clothes and shoes that are comfy and let you move around. Wardrobe should match the scenery that you have chosen.

– When –

The best times to meet up are after 3:00 and go till 5 or 6. Starting at 6:00 will result in more evening or sunset light (my favorite). Just ask yourself what kind of lighting will suit my choice of location best? Sessions normally run at least two hours and sometimes go up to four if multiple locations are desired.

– Where –

If you are an outdoors loving couple, local parks and greenways provide truly scenic backgrounds.

 A secluded spot in Salem.

A secluded spot in Salem.

Are you a bit more urban? Downtown Roanoke is a popular meeting place and there’s plenty of backdrops and options.

Across from Station #1.

Across from Station #1.

Or where you had your first date :)

Or where you had your first date 🙂

– The “Kids” –

Some couples have dogs, and I totally understand that including them in your photos is important. I encourage my clients to bring them along for half of the shoot, then focus on just the two of you. When including pets, we want to meet up somewhere with very few distractions to catch their attention.

Hollins University.

Hollins University.

I hope these tips have helped answer most of your questions about how to get the most out of your time with your  photographer. Remember to have fun and be yourself!

If I Were Getting Married Today…

Jessica&Tim weddingDon’t get me wrong, I loved everything about my wedding. It was ten years ago and our friends and family still talk about how pretty it was and how much fun they had. But when I look at all of the awesome favors, color schemes and décor brides – especially the gorgeous brides in our 2013 registry – use these days, I have to admit I’m a bit jealous. So, if I were getting married today…

1. Wedding boards on Pinterest would be my addiction: Sure there were wedding-related websites in 2003. But with Pinterest, brides have a one-stop shop for inspiration. Hair. Make-up. Dresses. Favors. You name it, you’re bound to find it on Pinterest. Check out our Pinterest page and be inspired!

2. I would wear my hair down: I’m self-conscious about my ears…I think they stick out. So you will rarely see me out with my hair in a ponytail. I guess back then it was in my mind that the wedding was a fancy occasion so wearing my hair up was appropriate. I love many of the up-do options out there, but I now wish my hair had been down and full of soft, flowing curls.

3. I would have digital copies of my photos: Maybe it was because I lived in a small town. I don’t know for sure. But digital images were not available from the photographer I used. So all I have to remember my wedding are a nice album and candid shots people took at the reception with the disposable cameras that were at each table. The photographers in our area shoot such awesome, creative shots that I would have loved back then. Maybe the husband and I can have some pictures taken to celebrate our 10th anniversary.

4. Magazines would still be stock-piled in my living room: I did it then and I would do it now. Sure, the digital world puts everything a click away, but I still love to flip through magazines. Today, I would peruse bridal magazines (like bridebook!) and tear out photos of cakes, favors, dresses and more to add to my wedding binder. The design for my wedding cake came from a magazine, and it was perfect!

bridebook 2013 cover reveal

Hello friends!

We are so excited to show off our brand new cover for the very first issue of bridebook. It was an incredibly tough decision as every submission was truly beautiful. You should’ve seen us in the art department – we had mock covers laid out on every inch of the floor as we tried to narrow down to the final ones. Our publisher came in to help and immediately saw this photo and loved it.

Lauren Maxwell is our 2013 cover girl and we just adore the way her eyes pop and that great smile. Her photographer, Kemper Mills Fant, did a wonderful job with her photos! We’ve got a great video coming up of how we did her surprise cover reveal (her mom was in on it too!) and her reaction is priceless! We can’t wait to show you (and what a good sport to agree to being on camera!).

We hope you love the cover as much as we do!


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