The couples that choose Michael C. Fina to celebrate their love depend on us. They know that we’re here to take care of any and everything they need when it comes to wedding jewels and that doesn’t stop after the wedding bells have rung. When the vows are said and the registry fulfilled, we’re still here for you. One of our Fina couples, Robyn & Anthony Bulacan purchased a beautiful princess-cut Tacori engagement ring here back in 2003. They recently visited us again at 500 Park Avenue to make sure everything was in tip-top shape! The gorgeous Tacori engagement ring was brought in for a tune up and returned to Robyn looking just as radiant as the day she said “Yes!” Take a look for yourself down below, we love how Robyn can change up the look of her dazzling jewels by stacking it alongside contrasting sizes and styles of bands in addition to her perfectly matching wedding band.
“When it came back it was like brand new and I couldn’t be happier!” – Robyn Bulacan
Want to know how you can become one of our Favorite Fina Couples? To see this and many more beautiful Tacori engagement rings available at Michael C. Fina, click to visit us online and then call us at 1-800-289-3462 to set up an appointment at our store located at 500 Park Avenue, New York, New York.
If you’re already one of our Favorite Fina couples and you’d like to share your story with us, feel free to visit us on Facebook and send us a message. We love hearing from happy couples like Robyn & Anthony!
On a warm July evening, Zack’s attention became captured by a girl who was chatting with her friend near the subway station. Zack decided to make up an excuse to interrupt their conversation and ask the girl (he’d later come to find her name was Kim) for directions. After some playful banter, he made his way down to the subway platform wishfully thinking about the girl he had just met. As fate would have it, a few minutes later while Kim was also excitedly pondering the guy whom had just surprisingly approached her, the two former strangers serendipitously reconnected on the subway platform and stepped into the same train car moments before the doors closed.
The entrance to that subway station became the setting for Zack’s proposal to Kim. It also became the inspiration for where we would photograph their engagement session.
Typically when couples ask for advice on where to shoot their engagement session, my first suggestion is to think about a place with meaning or symbolism. Make it personal. Where was your first date, or perhaps your most memorable date? Where did the proposal take place?
Perhaps it’s not a particular place, but instead where you both share a favorite activity. Hiking? Leisurely sipping a latte at an outdoor cafe? Spending time at the beach?
I view the engagement session as an opportunity to take a break from the daily grind and simply relax together and have fun. The more fun I can make this session means that taking photographs won’t potentially be seen as yet another thing to do prior to the wedding day. Think about it as a fun date…with your very own paparazzi!
Congratulations! If you are currently reading this while wearing a gorgeous engagement ring from Michael C. Fina, most likely you will be photographing an engagement session with your photographer soon!
I have a few tips that I would like to share with the Fina Family that will help you make the most of your session. I will be breaking up engagement session information over a series of posts and I would LOVE to hear from you! We welcome you to leave a comment below and be sure to check back regularly for the subsequent posts!
Timing: Always be sure to arrange for your session well in advance. Not only will you be sure to get a confirmed date with your photographer, you will have time to use your images for a Save The Date or have a personalized guest book created. Additionally, the closer you get to the wedding, the busier you will be and the more inclined you may be to view your session as a chore instead of the fun time it really is.
Location: I’ll be talking more in depth about locations coming up, but you should first pick a season and then figure out a location that is best suited to your needs. Personalize it! Finding a way to bring some meaning into your location will be an addition to the experience you will have.
Communication: Be sure to communicate with your photographer about what you are hoping for. This is also a good time to talk about anything about yourself that you don’t like in photographs. Additionally, involve your photographer on the decision-making process such as wardrobe, time of the day, location and themes. Discuss ahead of time your plan if it’s a rain date or if the weather is not good.
Light: The time of the day is crucial and your photographer will most likely guide you on this. I always prefer shooting during the end of the day, just before the sun is going to set. The light is warm and after it sets, it becomes a soft pastel color. It’s the “secret sauce” to making your images spectacular.
Wardrobe: Another item of communication between you and your photographer. It’s a matter of taste. I do want my couples to be relaxed and enjoy themselves, but I find the images are much more grand when my couples dress up.
It’s The Little Things:
Watches: Don’t wear them (unless for a symbolic reason), as it can detract from the timelessness of the images.
Hair elastics: Often forgotten about and become distracting on the wrist.
Shoes: Bring a pair of flats to save your feet while walking between locations.
Purses: Leave your purse at home as it detracts from the spontaneous moments or becomes a potential theft liability.
Research: Looking at images on the blogs or Pinterest is totally fine, but be aware that there are so many factors that went into making that image what it is. Some of these things could be: it was 100% reflective of the couple, the lighting and weather was unique to that moment, the wardrobe was appropriate, the personality of the photographer taking the shot and the location was particular to that image. Personally I like to photograph my couples as unique individuals and create images that are suited to THEM, not anyone else.
Be On Time: This is often so crucial because your photographer is setting up your session based upon the light. Light can change quickly and every minute that you are late is a potential loss of exquisite light.
Have Fun! Enjoy yourselves. See this as a date. Make plans to go out for dinner afterwards and just put this day aside as a special day without wedding planning, work or other obligations.
NEW YORK, April 4, 2014 — TheKnot.com, the number one wedding planning destination, today announces the wedding day of The Knot Dream Wedding. Now in its second year, the program followed one couple through every step of the wedding planning process with each element voted on by America. This year, TheKnot.com selected Rebekah Gregory and Pete DiMartino as the very deserving recipients of The Knot Dream Wedding. Today, America can tune in to watch the wedding take place at the Biltmore in Asheville, NC, live on TheKnot.com starting at 11 a.m. See all photos from the day on Instagram and Twitter by following #TheKnotDreamWedding and @theknot.
Rebekah and Pete were at the finish line of the Boston Marathon cheering on Pete’s mother last year. When the bomb exploded, Rebekah’s first thought was to protect her son, so she shielded him. She has endured 15 surgeries over the course of the past year, as well as preparing for the upcoming amputation of her left leg. Pete lost 90 percent of his right Achilles tendon and suffered multiple broken bones in his ankle. He has undergone surgeries and months of physical therapy. Their shared experience as a result of the explosion and surviving their injuries brought them even closer together and strengthened their relationship.
“We could not think of any couple more deserving of The Knot Dream Wedding,” said Rebecca Dolgin, TheKnot.com editor in chief. “We are so thrilled to help them overcome their past and bring on their new beginning to an amazing life together.”
Rebekah and Pete handed off all wedding planning decisions to America. Voting took place weekly on TheKnot.com/DreamWedding where people around the country voted for seven weeks on every element of the wedding, including the location, overall theme, bridesmaid dresses, hair and makeup, rings, cake, flowers and even Rebekah’s dress.
“Solidifying forever with Pete DiMartino just makes my heart really happy. And the fact that we get to share our special day with so many others thanks to The Knot, that’s pretty cool to me,” said Rebekah Gregory, The Knot Dream Wedding bride. “Although we do not feel more deserving of this honor than anyone else, we couldn’t be more excited to have shared our journey with so many other people and to have had America plan our wedding! Everyone has trials in life and this just happens to be ours. But if we can inspire one person to keep pushing forward by sharing our story, it’s totally worth it to me. And I don’t care if I have to hop, wheel or roll down that aisle, I will get to the other end of it because the person waiting for me is the only thing that matters.”
Since Valentine’s Day, thousands of people across the country tuned in to help Rebekah and Pete’s wedding dreams come true. Additionally, Lee Brice, an award-winning country artist, is providing the couple with his new song “I Don’t Dance” as their first dance. Rebekah and Pete will dance to the perfect wedding song, along with enjoying the winning wedding elements:
-- Location: Asheville, NC, the couple's favorite vacation destination, was
chosen for the wedding among other cities that the couple has ties to,
including New York, Boston and Louisville. A garden ceremony at Biltmore
was chosen for its fairytale setting next to a real-life castle.
-- Theme: The theme America chose is Enchanted Garden, a vision created by
celebrity wedding planner Marcy Blum of Marcy Blum Associates. With green
and brown woodland colors, plus whimsical elements like hanging lanterns,
this theme is a nod to Biltmore's gardens.
-- Rings: Classically Cool wedding bands were selected: a pave diamond band
for Rebekah and a titanium band for Pete, both by Michael C. Fina.
-- Bridesmaid Dresses: Rebekah's girls will don chiffon gowns in falcon,
complete with a trendy sweetheart strapless neckline by Watters.
-- The Dress: Rebekah will wear a gorgeous ivory fit-and-flare dress with
beaded embroidery, a dropped-waist and sweetheart neckline by Sophia
Moncelli for Kleinfeld Bridal.
-- Flowers: The romantic and playful whimsical woodland centerpieces
features a willow adorned tree trunk base and a secret garden of flowers
in shades of pink, plus blooming cherry blossoms designed by Holly
Chapple. All flowers are American grown from the California Cut Flower
Commission and will play into the enchanted theme with shades of pink,
lavender and peach.
-- Cake:Cake Alchemy will create a masterpiece of delicate white ruffles,
buttons and stunning peony sugar flowers to match the garden theme.
-- Hair & Makeup: Rebekah came to NYC for a hair and makeup trial with Alli
Web, founder of Drybar, and Kate Watson from Too Faced. The winning look
will be revealed on the wedding day.
About The Knot
The Knot is the nation’s leading wedding resource, reaching nearly every bride in America through the #1 wedding website, TheKnot.com; The Knot national and local wedding magazines; #1 wedding planning and fashion apps The Knot Wedding Planner and Wedding LookBook by The Knot; The Knot book series; syndication placements across the Internet and regular television appearances. The Knot is the flagship brand of XO Group Inc. (NYSE: XOXO; http://www.xogroupinc.com), a consumer Internet and media company devoted to weddings, pregnancy and everything in between, providing young women with the trusted information, products and advice they need to guide them through the most transformative events of their lives. Follow The Knot on Twitter @theknot.
Tips from Photomuse to Help You Choose Your Wedding Photographer
You said “yes,” but before you say “I do,” check out these tips on getting the most out of your wedding photography from Photomuse. I will be breaking down the tips over a series of posts, so be sure to check back often to catch them all. And as always, we’d love to hear from you. Leave a comment below if you have any questions or suggestions on what you would like to know from the photographic perspective of your wedding day.
How to Choose a Wedding Photographer:
I will begin by saying that you can search the Internet and find loads of pages about what questions to ask a potential photographer. I’m writing you as a wedding photographer who has been shooting weddings for over fifteen years. I’d like to share a bit of what I know, and I hope it helps guide your decision making process.
Before the search begins – Once you start looking, you will discover the choices in photography are overwhelming. The more decisions made ahead of time, the easier it will be to focus and save some time. Here are a few things to consider:
1. Is your decision based on price or quality? I typically tell my couples that sure, today you can probably hire a photographer at a low rate and get “documented” photos of your day IF the day goes perfectly without anything unanticipated happening. Are you a gambler? Here are some examples of the types of things that an experienced professional is capable of handling:
Bad weather. Rain, snow, humidity, bad lighting: these all affect the way a photographer shoots. An experienced professional not only knows how to handle it, they know how to work it to their advantage creatively and to provide you with unique images.
Equipment malfunctions. In addition to backup equipment, a professional also has a network of resources to call upon if necessary. Yes, that also includes fellow professionals who can come to the rescue in case of an emergency.
Timing. Yes, weddings typically always run later than anticipated. Don’t stress. A pro knows how to go with the flow and won’t add further stress to your day. Additionally, no matter how unique the wedding may be, there are certain aspects that remain the same. A professional is guaranteed to know when important moments are about to occur and be ready to capture it.
Other Vendors. The professional knows how to play nice and get along with your other vendors, and in many cases, already has established working relationships with these vendors. All of these things help provide better access and a smoother day for everyone involved. Collaboration is a key element.
Essentially, that extra money in your budget for photography won’t just be for the creative talent, but additionally for the therapeutic effect this person can provide to your whole outlook on the day!
2. Style. I often hear from couples who tell me that they don’t look good when they pose for photos. Don’t let that be the motivating factor of your style choice. The candid and photojournalistic images are enjoyed so much because the subjects are being themselves. What if you found that photographer who could pose you while allowing you to feel comfortable enough in being yourself? Would that make a difference in your choice? The right photographer will know how to help you feel relaxed and how to get the best shot of you in all circumstances. What is more important to consider is what images move you the most. What can you see yourself looking at ten years down the road when you open your wedding album? How much interaction from the photographer do you want?
I’ll go more in depth on styles in another post, so be sure to check back! The important thing here is to find what moves you the most.
“A portrait is not made in the camera but on either side of it.” – Edward Steichen.
The photographer is one vendor that you will be spending almost the entire day with. The photographer’s attitude will make a big difference to your day. I can’t tell you how many times I hear about photographers that are rude or bossy. Years after the day, that is the impression that some carry with them long after they have viewed their wedding photos. When I receive compliments from my couples on their images, I always tell them that it was a collaboration. My personality is reflected back to me when the couples are comfortable enough to be candid and to trust in what I am doing. This always shows in the final image.
Make a point to talk on the phone or better yet, to meet the potential photographers in person. Find out if you click! (Yeah, bad pun intended!)
4. Questions, questions. Lastly, I recommend doing a search on all of those other guides on the internet about choosing a wedding photographer. It is important to know what you are getting for your money, and what to expect. There are definitely some solid questions to ask, that’s simply being an educated consumer. If you want to know your photographer a little better though, try to break him/her out of the “wedding interview script.” Find out what he/she likes about shooting weddings. What part of the day is their favorite to photograph? What got them into wedding photography? Do they continue to educate themselves? Do they photograph for personal enjoyment outside of weddings as well? Do they listen to you and allow you to talk as well? Are they taking an interest in your life also?
Wedding photography is not just about the images that remain, it’s also about the experience that will remain in your heart.
A huge thank you to our friend Kristin Reimer at Photomuse! Want some more wedding photography advice? Check out her other posts on our blog and continue to check back for more!
We are excited to announce that your favorite designer engagement rings and wedding bands are now available for purchase on our website! We have been helping New Yorkers get engaged and married for over 75 years, and now we can celebrate these special milestones with couples all over the country!
Find out why you should purchase a diamond engagement ring from Michael C. Fina…without ever leaving the comforts of your own home or office!
The Fina Touch
Every diamond at Michael C. Fina is personally hand-inspected, sorted, and selected by the Fina family. There is no compromise in our commitment to bringing you the very highest quality available. The reputation of our family name has been built and depends on this promise.
Diamond Upgrade Policy
Michael C. Fina is dedicated to ensuring your satisfaction forever. We understand that there is no other ring that will ever replace the first in your memories, but should you wish to purchase a diamond that is even one more dollar more than the original, we will credit the full price of the first diamond toward your purchase of another. This policy only applies to diamonds that have been purchased at Michael C. Fina.
Helping You Achieve Your Dreams
Another benefit to purchasing her engagement ring at Michael C. Fina is the GE Capital Luxury Card. The Michael C. Fina credit card is offered by GE Capital Retail Bank and is a symbol of our exceptional service and quality for which Michael C. Fina is known for. When you open your Michael C. Fina credit card account, we can offer you flexible plans to help achieve your dreams. You can apply for the card online or in our Park Avenue store.
After the “Yes!”
The sparkle in your diamond is a direct reflection on us. We invite you to come to us to have your engagement ring cleaned as often as you would like. We also offer a complimentary first resizing as well as appraisals so you may update your insurance.
It is crucial to us at Michael C. Fina that the diamonds we purchase retain and reflect purity in every way. We strictly adhere to World Trade Organization and Kimberley Process guidelines on conflict diamonds and we guarantee that all of our diamonds have been purchased from legitimate sources and not involved in funding conflict.
Our membership in and stellar standing with the Jewelers Vigilance Committee further ensures that our diamonds and precious metals come only from sources committed to full compliance with all of the laws and regulations upholding the jewelry industry’s highest ethical standards.
A Proud Member
American Gem Society ~ Better Business Bureau ~ New York State Jewelers Association ~ Platinum Guild ~ Jewelers Vigilance Committee ~ Jewelers of America
When YES means forever, give her Michael C. Fina.
Do you have any questions or concerns about purchasing a designer engagement ring or wedding band on our website? Please email email@example.com or call 1-800-289-3462.
Top photography courtesy of John & Joseph Photography Inc.