A spotlight on Bizia Greene

Dempsey & Carroll event curator Austin Ackles sat down with Bizia to discuss etiquette and her recent wedding.bizia1

AA: Most of our clients have their thank you cards printed at the same time as their wedding invitations. Occasionally, I get panicked phone calls as gifts start arriving far in advance of the wedding. When should the thank you cards be sent?

BG: Ideally thank you notes should be sent as gifts arrive but you can allow up to three months after the wedding. Give yourself a head start by ordering stationery, selecting beautiful postage and addressing envelopes in advance of your wedding date. After the whirlwind of the celebrations and honeymoon you’ll be glad to come home to part of the task complete. Make writing your notes a relaxing ritual with a well lit, comfortable space accompanied by a cup of tea or glass of bubbly. Share the task with your partner and write a few a day.

AA: With the holiday season approaching, we’ll all be attending too many wonderful parties. What should every gracious thank you note include?

BG: When thanking your host, reference something unique about the event that moved you i.e. the beautiful decor, the delicious trifle like your grandmother used to make or the new friends you made. By making it personal your host will know the event was a success and you’re sure to get an invite to the next soirée.

.AA: What thank you card have you received that left you with the most lasting impression?

BG: Thank you notes that expressed the impact of our attention to detail and effort stand out. My husband and I received a few shortly after our wedding complimenting our weekend events, decor, catering and seating arrangements to name a few. It made us feel like all the hard work we put into curating a memorable and warm celebration was recognized and appreciated.

AA: Your own wedding was just about two months ago. In terms of planning, what was your biggest worry that simply evaporated on the big day?

BG: The weather, of course! Our wedding ceremony and reception were supposed to be outside. Although we had a rain plan, most of our energy wabizia2s spent on the outdoor vision. We began the ceremony outside and midway through thunder and lightning moved in quickly. Guests rallied and began carrying their chairs indoors where we finished the ceremony. I got to arrive at my own wedding twice and was relieved to see what good sports they all were. We dined by candlelight because the power went out. In fact, everyone thought the evening was very memorable and laughed about it. In the end, guests are there to celebrate you rain or shine.



Capri is Calling


amal2We just came back from the Amalfi Coast and cannot stop thinking about it. If you are looking for a romantic destination for a wedding, engagement party or a special anniversary, September is the perfect month!


Capri: Delight of roman emperors, international jet set and home of the mythological Sirens is so beautiful that is impossible to ignore. It’s hard to find a spot without charm in this small hilly island. Whether you decide to welcome your guests in a hotel, restaurants or private property, the personality of the Island will embrace you with the brightest blue, the unmistakable fragrance of lemon trees and the reward of incredible food.



Ravello: A couple of churches, three cobblestone streets and an breathtaking view of the Mediterranean. The town, perched on top of a mountain, is a fable-like destination for majestic weddings or more intimate gatherings. A handful of stunning century-old hotels line the main road on the edge of the hill and keep you floating in the middle of the sky. Get pampered at one of the secluded beach clubs a few thousands steps downhill and dine admiring the sunset in one of the Michelin starred restaurants of the ancient town, the memories will stay with you forever.remo


Paper ideas: White cotton paper; Deckled edges; Harbor Blue ink; Italian Script; botanical prints for the hospitality pieces.

A Love of Many Colors: Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera


Image courtesy of: http://theredlist.com/wiki-2-24-224-268-view-culture-art-fashion-profile-frida-kahlo-diego-rivera.html

Imagine a love fueled by both intense devotion and tumultuous passion. This was the reality for artists Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera. During the span of their 27 year relationship, artists Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera exchanged numerous letters that reflect the spectrum of their love, encompassing their joy, anguish, and desire.

In 1922, Frida Kahlo met painter Diego Rivera, whose work she admired deeply. After not being in contact for several years, the artists reconnected in 1928 and Rivera began to act as Kahlo’s artistic mentor. Their relationship eventually became intimate, yielding one of art history’s most fascinating romances. The artists inspired one another, Kahlo and Rivera urging one another to explore their passion deeper in their art. Diego is cited as stating, “I did not know it then, but Frida had already become the most important fact in my life. And would continue to be up to the moment she died, 27 years later.” (Source: http://www.diego-rivera.org/quotes.html) Despite their immense love for one another, Kahlo and Rivera had multiple affairs throughout their marriage. Yet, Kahlo and Rivera remained devoted to one another because of a resilient passion that withstood even their relationship’s darkest moments.

Image and transcription courtesy of: http://blogs.warwick.ac.uk/zoebrigley/entry/letter_to_diego/

Image and transcription courtesy of: http://blogs.warwick.ac.uk/zoebrigley/entry/letter_to_diego/

Transcribed translation:

Truth is, so great, that I wouldn’t like to speak, or sleep, or love.
To feel myself trapped, with no fear of blood, outside time and magic, within your own fear, and your anguish, and within the very beating of your heart.
All this madness if I asked it of you, I know, in your silence, there would be only confusion.
I ask you for violence, in the nonsense, and you, you give me grace, your light and your warmth.
I’d like to paint you, but there are no colors [sic], because there are so many, in my confusion, the tangible form of my great love.


Image courtesy of: http://www.sflatinofilmfestival.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/Frida-Kahlo-Diego-Rivera-19.jpg

Image courtesy of: http://www.sflatinofilmfestival.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/Frida-Kahlo-Diego-Rivera-19.jpg

Madeleine Garone,

Madeleine Garone signature

Revisiting Our 14 Days of Valentines: The Chosen Love Note

This year we at Dempsey & Carroll asked ourselves, “Why does Valentine’s Day have to be only one day?” With this question in mind, we launched the 14 Days of Valentines to promote and honor the love that surrounds us. Image

We extended the opportunity to everyone to share their love notes with us. After being inspired by such moving and personal notes, we selected our favorite, a love note from Michael Buffon to his wife. He graciously allowed us to share his note, which can be found below.

I still remember the first time I met you…hours went by in what seemed like minutes.  I knew that there was something special about you and I felt an instant connection. Twelve years went by and through chance we reconnected and my life was changed forever.

My wife, best friend, and lover, you’re more than I could have ever imagined.  I love you more each day and I am yours forever.  I am truly blessed and celebrate our love with you this Valentine’s Day. 

Notes like Michael’s show us love is a profound and powerful sentiment that we can feel and experience. We thank Michael, his wife, and all who shared their letters for making this a very special Valentine’s Day for us. Though Valentine’s Day has come and gone, we can make believe it’s Valentine’s Day every day with kind actions (those “just because I love you” kind), smiles, and of course, a thoughtful handwritten note.


After the War Ends, Love is Still There: Winston and Clementine Churchill

In times of love and war, handwritten letters reigned. For Winston Churchill and his wife Clementine, their letters acted as portals into each other’s worlds while apart during their 56 year relationship. Twenty-five years before he was to become the Prime Minister of Great Britain, Churchill, who was deeply devoted to his country, joined the army to fight in World War I. As he ventured into the war zone, he wrote a letter addressed to his beloved Clementine on July 17, 1915, in an envelope marked with “To be sent to Mrs. Churchill in the event of my death.” Despite the worry that burdened Clementine’s heart while her husband was away at war, she ultimately never had to open the letter.

churchill letter to clementine

Churchill’s letter to Clementine in case of his death. Dated July 17, 1915. (Image courtesy of: http://www.cam.ac.uk/about-the-university/history/800th-anniversary?800redirect=page/117/winston-churchill.htm)


Do not grieve for me too much. I am a spirit confident of my rights. Death is only an incident & not the most important which happens to us in this state of being. On the whole, especially since I met you my darling I have been happy, & you have taught me how noble a woman’s heart can be. If there is anywhere else I shall be on the look out for you. Meanwhile look forward, feel free, rejoice in life, cherish the children, guard my memory. God bless you.

Good bye.


The couple’s correspondence acted as an avenue to the other’s hearts during an era in which the loss of life was staggering. It is because of their letters that the love between Winston and Clementine Churchill became immortal.

Winston and Clementine Churchill saluting the troops aboard the RMS “Queen Mary” in 1943. (Image courtesy of: http://www.stevenujifusa.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/11/7435172.jpg)

Winston and Clementine Churchill saluting the troops aboard the RMS “Queen Mary” in 1943. (Image courtesy of: http://www.stevenujifusa.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/11/7435172.jpg)

The Fourteen Days of Valentine’s Day: Ready, Set, Show Your Love!

The Fourteen Days of Valentine’s Day are here! At Dempsey & Carroll, we enjoy celebrating life’s major events, especially the ones that stem from love.


While love is in the air, we are inviting you to share your love letters, emails, texts, and post-its with us. All submissions should be sent to info@dempseyandcarroll.com before February 2014. On February 17th, we will select one submission as our favorite. The winning submitter will receive an engraved 2014 Calendar and our Sweet Sentiments. calendar

To inaugurate the 14 days of Valentine’s Day, Dempsey & Carroll’s president Jennifer Pool shares her wedding vows.


I cannot promise you a life of sunshine;
I cannot promise riches, wealth, or gold;
I cannot promise you an easy pathway
That leads away from change or growing old.

But I can promise all my heart’s devotion;
A smile to chase away your tears of sorrow;
A love that’s ever true and ever growing;
A hand to hold in yours through each tomorrow.

(inspired by This I Can Promise, author unknown)


Exchange of Rings

With every smile and touch of your hand you remind me to live in the moment
There are no second chances

We love each other every day squeezing everything we can
Out of the world around us

I’ve found myself in you
My best friend

Forever is a long time
But somehow shorter than it took to find you

I will always love you because
Somehow I always have

Thank you for loving me the way you do.


Love letters, notes, and vows are what we hold close to the heart. Our sentiments become immortal in these letters, a permanent reminder of what love is and how we can integrate it in our daily lives. Now that’s something worth celebrating!

In Matters of Diplomacy and Love: John and Abigail Adams

When we look to the past to better understand our world, we often seek the historical documents and correspondences that shaped our governments and their institutions. Yet, romance also left behind letters that continue to shape our understanding of not only the world as it once was, but of our shared humanity.

John and Abigail Adams began their courtship in 1762, several years before the birth of the United States. The couple enjoyed using pen names with one another, John addressing Abigail as Diana, after the Roman goddess of the moon, and Abigail calling him Lysander, after the Spartan war hero. (Facts from http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/amex/adams/peopleevents/e_courtship.html) By the end of John’s political career in 1801, he and Abigail had exchanged over 1,100 letters.

Though the couple spent considerable time apart, their correspondence acted as a reminder of their dedication to one another and allowed for a rigorous intellectual exchange pertaining to the pursuit of a democratic nation.

Portrait of John and Abigail Adams. (image courtesy of http://symonsez.files.wordpress.com/2009/03/johnabigail1.jpg)

Portrait of John and Abigail Adams. (image courtesy of http://symonsez.files.wordpress.com/2009/03/johnabigail1.jpg)

In perhaps one of Abigail’s most famous letters to John, she showcases her both her assertiveness and commitment to democratic values as she reminds him that he needs to “remember the ladies” in an age where women were taught to remain in the domestic sphere.

Braintree March 31, 1776

I wish you would ever write me a Letter half as long as I write you; and tell me if you may where your Fleet are gone? What sort of Defence Virginia can make against our common Enemy? Whether it is so situated as to make an able Defence? Are not the Gentery Lords and the common people vassals, are they not like the uncivilized Natives Brittain represents us to be? I hope their Riffel Men who have shewen themselves very savage and even Blood thirsty; are not a specimen of the Generality of the people…

I have sometimes been ready to think that the passion for Liberty cannot be Eaquelly Strong in the Breasts of those who have been accustomed to deprive their fellow Creatures of theirs. Of this I am certain that it is not founded upon that generous and christian principal of doing to others as we would that others should do unto us.

I feel very differently at the approach of spring to what I did a month ago. We knew not then whether we could plant or sow with safety, whether when we had toild we could reap the fruits of our own industery, whether we could rest in our own Cottages, or whether we should not be driven from the sea coasts to seek shelter in the wilderness, but now we feel as if we might sit under our own vine and eat the good of the land.

I feel a gaieti de Coar to which before I was a stranger. I think the Sun looks brighter, the Birds sing more melodiously, and Nature puts on a more chearfull countanance. We feel a temporary peace, and the poor fugitives are returning to their deserted habitations.

Tho we felicitate ourselves, we sympathize with those who are trembling least the Lot of Boston should be theirs. But they cannot be in similar circumstances unless pusilanimity and cowardise should take possession of them. They have time and warning given them to see the Evil and shun it.-I long to hear that you have declared an independancy-and by the way in the new Code of Laws which I suppose it will be necessary for you to make I desire you would Remember the Ladies, and be more generous and favourable to them than your ancestors. Do not put such unlimited power into the hands of the Husbands. Remember all Men would be tyrants if they could. If perticuliar care and attention is not paid to the Laidies we are determined to foment a Rebelion, and will not hold ourselves bound by any Laws in which we have no voice, or Representation.

That your Sex are Naturally Tyrannical is a Truth so thoroughly established as to admit of no dispute, but such of you as wish to be happy willingly give up the harsh title of Master for the more tender and endearing one of Friend. Why then, not put it out of the power of the vicious and the Lawless to use us with cruelty and indignity with impunity. Men of Sense in all Ages abhor those customs which treat us only as the vassals of your Sex. Regard us then as Beings placed by providence under your protection and in immitation of the Supreem Being make use of that power only for our happiness.

Every one of your Friend[s] send their Regards, and all the little ones. Your Brothers youngest child lies bad with convulsion fitts. Adieu. I need not say how much I am Your ever faithfull Friend.

Excerpt courtesy of: http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/amex/adams/filmmore/ps_ladies.html

One of John Adams’ many letters to his wife Abigail. Image courtesy of: http://media.npr.org/assets/artslife/books/2010/10/first-family/letter-c4814ef7a4f1466e8d7a456d7692ba7e643cdcec-s6-c30.jpg

One of John Adams’ many letters to his wife Abigail. Image courtesy of: http://media.npr.org/assets/artslife/books/2010/10/first-family/letter-c4814ef7a4f1466e8d7a456d7692ba7e643cdcec-s6-c30.jpg

There is truth in saying that the power of the written word continues to challenge and mold our conceptions of what love is. The correspondence between John and Abigail Adams showcases a unique egalitarianism that existed in their relationship—it was that egalitarianism that they had hoped would one day transcend their letters into what would become American democracy.


Madeleine Garone,

Madeleine Garone signature



A Love Stemmed from Letters: The Story of Elizabeth Barrett and Robert Browning

It all began when she read the words, “I love your verses with all my heart, dear Miss Barrett …”

R. Browning's first letter to E. Barrett

Robert Browning’s first letter to Elizabeth Barrett, dated 10 January 1845. Photo courtesy of Geni Blog (http://www.geni.com/blog/the-love-story-of-elizabeth-barrett-and-robert-browning-379330.html).

In 2014, it may seem impossible to imagine that a romance can begin with a simple letter, but it is something that the Victorians certainly got right. The English poets Elizabeth Barrett and Robert Browning exchanged some 573 love letters over the duration of their courtship, which all began after Browning wrote Barrett a letter praising her poetry. Although Barrett was afflicted by a chronic illness, she and Browning continued to exchange letters, which allowed the two poets to gain a deeper understanding of one another. After their fifth month of correspondence, Barrett and Browning finally met face to face, but continued to explore their relationship through writing letters. In 1864, just over a year after they began corresponding, Barrett and Browning married and moved to Italy in an effort to alleviate Elizabeth’s illness in the country’s warmer climate. Barrett’s father, who wished her to never marry, disowned her after she ran away with her new husband.

It was through their habitual letter writing that the two poets revealed their sentiments for one another, ultimately allowing their love to grow. Their souls were embedded in their handwriting, lying exposed for the other to see. They shared poetry and philosophy, sealing their devotion to one another upon the sealing of each envelope. For these poets, their letters acted as a means for them to plunge into the other’s world, to learn what it is like to be Elizabeth Barrett, to be Robert Browning. Their story, one that evolved through letters, is one that will continue to withstand time. As their eyes scrolled over each delicately written word, their intimacy blossomed into something that no one else in the world could touch.


Elizabeth Barrett and Robert Browning

Portraits of Elizabeth Barrett and Robert Browning. Photo courtesy of Geni Blog (http://www.geni.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/BarrettBrowning.jpg).

Today, there are infinite possibilities of how couples come to be. Here at Dempsey & Carroll, our passion is paper, and we would love to learn about your own personal love story and the letters and notes exchanged that helped to cultivate that love. If you are interested in sharing your story on our blog, please email madeleine@dempseyandcarroll.com.


Madeleine Garone,

Madeleine Garone signature