The *Perfect* Wedding Gift | North Carolina Wedding Planner

First, let me preface this post by saying…..

If you are attending a wedding as a guest, please please please get the couple something off of their registry or send them a monetary gift. You think a handmade scrapbook sounds like a great idea, but trust me. The couple would much rather have the china they registered for or some extra cash to spend on the house they just bought.

One of the most popular questions that clients or parents asks me is this:

“What should I get my significant other/parent/daughter/son as a wedding present?
I want it to be unique and special.”

Seems like a tall order but I have the *perfect* solution to this quandary.

The perfect wedding gift is … drum roll please … artwork!

A commissioned piece of art is truly something special and unique. It becomes an instant heirloom and holds a great deal of sentimental value. All great things when it comes to wedding presents. I’ve rounded up some of my favorite wedding artists and ideas so you can gift the special person in your life with the *perfect* wedding gift!

1. Bouquet:  Lauren Skunta is my wedding design crush. She creates the most amazing custom installations for weddings across the nation and recently has added bouquet artwork to her repertoire. She offers custom sketches and paintings of wedding bouquets that are to die for. You could gift the bride-to-be with a beautiful card to let her know that post-wedding, a commissioned painting of her blooms will be headed her way.

Check out Lauren’s work here.

the perfect wedding gift

2. Venue: I took my own advice on this one! For my own wedding, I commissioned a watercolor of our venue from sweet Laurie Duncan of Carolina Delight. I had two high quality prints made for my mom and Bryan’s parents and have the original on display in our home. I was so pleased with the result!

Check out Laurie’s work here.

the perfect wedding gift

3. The Couple: An art piece doesn’t have to be what is traditionally done – painting, sketch, etc. Depending on your style, a cool custom graphic design may be just what you are looking for. I love Miss Design Berry for this. They create the most amazing custom prints, guest books, you name it. I have even commissioned a custom snap chat filter from them!

Check out Miss Design Berry’s work here.

the perfect wedding gift

4. Vows: This one is on my wish list. Jessica Peddicord is the most amazing watercolor artist and can seriously do an.yyy.thinggg. In addition to offering custom invitations and work, she creates the beautiful watercolor vows you see here. These would also make the *perfect* first anniversary gift (hint, hint husband of mine: year one is paper!).

Check out Jessica’s work here.

(Photo by Callie of Nancy Ray Photography)


5. Live Artist: Hiring a live artist to paint a scene from your wedding, on site, would be SO fun. Not only do you reap the benefits of receiving a beautiful piece of art to place in your home, but you also offer something interesting and different for your guests to observe during the ceremony or reception. Southern couples, one of my favorite artists for hire is Ben with Wed On Canvas. I love his style and, bonus, he can also make your painting into beautiful note cards and prints if you want to share the love!

Check out Ben’s work here.

the perfect wedding gift

So, what do you think? Do you agree that artwork is the *perfect* wedding gift? I would love to hear some of your favorite ideas too. Share in the comments below!


Leigh Pearce is the owner and creative director of Leigh Pearce Events, a boutique planning and design company specializing in luxury weddings and highly personalized events. LPE is based in Greensboro, NC, and serves all of North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, and destinations beyond with impeccable and exclusive wedding experiences. Connect with Leigh today at 336-552-5645 or leigh@leighpearceevents about your special event. 

Kind Words from the Parents of the Bride | Winston-Salem, NC Wedding Planner

I absolutely adore this sweet family! Brooke’s parents, Jenny and Doug, were so sweet to share some kind words with me after the wedding day:

Special Day. We just wanted to thank Leigh for making it just that – a very special day for our daughter and her new husband. We know Leigh is in high demand and does weddings almost every week, but last weekend was the only one Brooke & Jordan, and all of our family, will ever experience. And we appreciate everything Leigh and her group did to make it both unique and exclusive – as if it was a once in a lifetime event for her as well! Could not have been more perfect.


Brooke + Jordan with Brooke’s parents on wedding day!

Megan Travis Photography

Friendsgiving | Greensboro NC Corporate Event Planner

When I made the brand shift from Leigh Pearce Weddings to Leigh Pearce Events, it was because of my heart for events like Friendsgiving. Weddings are our soul at LPE, but corporate, social, and non-profit events are our heart.

Last fall, I worked with The Friends of Greensboro Downtown Parks to plan a Friendsgiving Feast in Center City Park and LeBauer Park. The committee and I worked together to create a festive evening with a progressive dinner, fabulous per usual thanks to 1618 On Location, celebrating the 10th anniversary of Center City and the launch of the much awaited, LeBauer Park. The proceeds raised from this event benefited free community programming in these two parks.

If you are interested in partnering with Leigh Pearce Events on your Greensboro, Winston-Salem, or High Point event, please contact us at 336-552-5645 or

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Production: Leigh Pearce Events | Photography: Lynn Donovan | Location: Center City Park + Lebauer Park | Rentals: The Prettiest Pieces + Southern Event Rental | Catering: 1618 On Location

Featured on Pop Sugar | North Carolina Wedding Planner

2017 weddings are in full swing and while I don’t fancy myself a trend follower, there are definitely some great looks popping up this year! Pop Sugar was so kind to ask for my thoughts, alongside some other amazing planners and designers, on this year’s hottest wedding decor trends. Hop over and check it out!


Wedding Planner Turned Bride {Leigh + Bryan’s Wedding} | Greensboro NC Wedding Planner

This may be my favorite blog post ever.. it’s not everyday that you get to share *your own* wedding on your wedding blog! Style Me Pretty was so kind to feature it last week (see that post here) and I’ve finnnnnnnally narrowed down my favorite images to share with y’all. I’ve shared some of my favorite details and moments along the way but before we get into the pretty, I wanted to say one more thank you to our amazing vendors that made our day so special. Anna, Carla, Karina, Gabby, Stacy, Stacy, Mario, ShannonShannon, and Carol, Bryan and I can’t thank you enough!

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After tossing around some ideas about destination weddings, my high school sweetheart, Bryan, and I decided on a local wedding with a small guest list of only 65 of our closest family and friends. We chose the Weir-Jordan House in downtown Greensboro for our venue and set the date for October 22, two days after our 14 year dating anniversary. We loved everything about the Weir-Jordan from it’s Southern antebellum feel to it’s rich history (it is one of the oldest houses in Greensboro). It checked every box for us — an outdoor ceremony space, a spot for a tent, and an amazing in-house caterer.

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Some of my favorite fashionable details were my pearl necklace (that I still wear regularly!) and my shoes. My two favorite movies are Steel Magnolias and Father of the Bride. My mom, sister, sister-in-law, and best friend hosted a Steel Magnolias themed bridal shower for me, complete with red velvet armadillo cupcakes! As an homage to Father of the Bride, I was on a mission to find some cool sneakers and fell in love with these lace high tops from Anthropologie.

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Funny enough, Bryan is the one that brought up the idea of a first look! In all my sharing about my work, he must have picked up a thing or two. There is an upstairs, private, Charleston-esque porch at our venue that was an ideal location for a first look. Although we decided not to give each other wedding gifts, I surprised Bryan during our first look with my dad’s gold cuff links. He passed away a few years ago and I thought it would be the perfect way to have him there in spirit. After our first look, we hopped in the car for photos at a favorite local spot, The Proximity Hotel. We really enjoyed having some alone time together before the craziness set it. We highly recommend it!

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Next step – select our bridal party! We ultimately decided not to have a large party — all of my girlfriends are married with children or pregnant so I wanted to make the day as relaxed and enjoyable for them as possible. We all got ready together and it was SO much fun. Surprisingly, my best friend from high school went into labor in the middle of the night before the wedding and obviously had to miss the wedding. I took my wedding dress and crashed her newborn session a few weeks later so we could have pictures together! My sister was my maid of honor and looked beautiful in her Jenny Yoo gown .. the fabric and layers of her dress tied in with mine perfectly. My mom’s gorgeous navy dress and sapphire earrings added just the amount of sparkle we needed! Doesn’t she look fabulous? Bryan’s best man, in true Southern fashion, was his father. They looked so dapper in their black tuxedos!


Our sweet flower girls are two of our favorite people in the whole wide world. They looked like little princesses in their tulle and satin dresses complete with flower halos!

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Our ceremony was absolutely perfect and by far, my favorite part of the day. I loved our music selections: an instrumental version of Rivers and Roads by The Head and The Heart for our parents and wedding party and an instrumental version of Amarillo by Morning by George Strait, my dad’s favorite song. We had two special readings. A scripture reading by one of our very best friends as well as poem read by Bryan’s sister. We walked back down the aisle to a mash up of Ants Marching and Ode to Joy.

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After the ceremony, we sent our guests inside to warm up and for cocktail hour and dinner. Stacy with Savory Street Catering created an amazing custom menu for us! Some of the highlights were pulled pork and collard egg rolls with mango chutney, crab hush puppies with Cajun aioli, butternut squash ravioli, beef tenderloin with white cheddar grit cakes, and mini tomato pies.

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For our design, we kept everything elegant, timeless, and classic. Our florist, the Farmer’s Wife, has always been our family florist so it was a no brainer to work with Stacy on our wedding. She is truly like family and created floral magic for us! Maxie B’s made my wedding cake dreams come true with our stunning cake (and Bryan’s dream come true with a layer of Devil’s food cake!). One of my only major must haves was a clear top tent with big chandeliers and a black and white dance floor that I could twirl on. Mission accomplished!!


After dinner, we danced the night away! Our first dance was “You & Me” by Dave Matthews Band. We have been to countless DMB concerts so it was only fitting that we danced to Dave. The chorus is also perfect for a few twirls!


Later in the evening while cake was served, we offered a few more desserts. Bryan has a serious sweet tooth and is, hands down, the biggest Pepsi addict you will ever meet. We offered ice cream float shooters along with cake.. three kinds: Pepsi, Sundrop, and Cheerwine. So good!!


We ended the night with a glowing sparkler exit and hopped in a London taxi cab headed for O. Henry Hotel. It was the perfect day and we couldn’t be more grateful for the experience!


Planning + Design: Leigh Pearce Events | Photography: Anna Paschal Photography | Venue: Weir-Jordan House | Catering: Savory Street Catering | Rentals: Party Reflections + Southern Event Rental | Hair + Makeup: Carla White | Cake: Maxie B’s | Floral Design: The Farmer’s Wife | Wedding Dress: Southern Bride | Mens Attire: Gordon’s Menswear | Bride’s Sneakers: Anthropologie | Bridesmaid Dress: Jenny Yoo | DJ: Mario Parker

Southern Weddings V9 Launch Party at The Carolina Inn | Chapel Hill NC Event Planner

When the ladies at Southern Weddings Magazine asked for my help for their V9 launch party, I was beyond happy to oblige! I simply adore the magazine and knew that anything those talented ladies had dreamed up would be amazing. I chatted with Marissa about her initial ideas to create a love letter wall based on the key editorial in the latest issue. From there, we collaborated on this lovely, interactive wall that was such a fun edition to the party!

My dear friend, Anna Paschal Photography, tagged along for the party and I am so grateful for her helping hands. We started with this beautiful white wall from Paisley + Jade and added ribbon then soft blue envelopes with mini white clothespins (no easy feat as many calculations were made for perfect lines!). Next up, Serendipity Designs Raleigh added the final touch – a lush greenery garland and fresh blooms. The result was stunning and is such a great idea to translate into escort cards or a guest book at a real wedding. File that one away, friends!


Jessica of Simply Jessica Marie reached out to me a few days before the party with a top secret surprise for the SW ladies. She had painted this beautiful portrait of them and needed the perfect spot to place it. I knew this sweet little writing desk was the perfect home for her artwork.


Loved working with these two talented ladies, Marissa and Jessica!


Here are a few more sneak peeks of the party from the fabulous AJ Dunlap for those of you that weren’t able to join us!

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Love Letter Wall Planning + Styling: Leigh Pearce Events | Photography: AJ Dunlap | Vintage Rentals: Paisley + Jade | Venue + Catering: The Carolina Inn | Floral Design: Serendipity Designs Raleigh | Calligraphy + Artwork: Simply Jessica Marie | Swag Bags: Bash Bags, Belle and Union Co., All She Wrote Notes, The Paisley Ribbon, Laurel Calligraphy, The Virginia Artisans, Canvas HQ

Kind Words from the Bride | Greensboro, NC Wedding Planner

Sweet Hannah was so kind to write a few words about our services. Thank you, Hannah!:

From start to finish, Leigh was fantastic. Planning a wedding from out of town is extremely stressful, but she did an incredible job keeping me in the loop and on schedule to pull off the wedding of my dreams. She took the time at the beginning to really hone in on my vision and took it to the next level, our wedding truly was above and beyond expectations! Leigh handled the (many!) ongoing adjustments and last minute changes with ease, and I went into my wedding weekend completely confident that everything would be taken care of, allowing me to truly be “present” in the moment and just enjoy the experience. Even my less detail-oriented father and husband couldn’t help but admire all the “little” details that created an absolutely gorgeous ceremony and reception. Months later we are still getting comments from guests about our beautiful wedding, and I wouldn’t change a thing! Thank you Leigh!!


Hannah + Kyle on their wedding day!

Justin Cook Photography