Spotlight – Queen City Catering

Last month our spotlight was on Heidi and her team at Lily Bee’s Events + Florals. This month we’re going behind the scenes with one of Charlotte’s leading caterers… Queen City Catering. We first met the team at Queen City Catering at a Bridal Showcase vendor party early this year and several cupcakes later it was obvious we we’re going to be friends 🙂

duck with plus sauce

Queen City Catering is a client driven “Boutique Caterer” that provides a top-tier catering experience that will impress your guests with amazing flavor, impeccable design and extraordinary service. Whether your event calls for a 50 person cocktail reception or a plated four course dinner with organic wine pairing for 500, their culinary services are tailor-made to fit your creative, organizational, and budgetary requirements.


We sat down with Queen City Catering’s Director of Weddings and Events (Shannon Cudmore) earlier this week and get some behind the scenes access to Queen City Catering.


Spotlight – Lily Bee’s Events + Florals

We recently decided that the best way to connect brides to our favorite vendors from the Charlotte wedding scene was to start a monthly vendor “Spotlight”. For our first month we’re incredibly excited to talk about one of Charlotte’s premier Wedding Event + Floral Design experts… Lily Bee’s Events + Florals.


Lily Bee’s prides itself on not being the typical floral shop with a cooler full of old roses. They are one of the Charlotte area’s Premier Floral Shop / Event Planner / Decor Rental providers and offer personalized relationship based service. In other words, you’re not just another file in the office or date on the calendar.

They take the time to get to know you and believe that the relationship built over the planning process makes a huge difference for everyone involved. Yes, you can get flowers from your local grocery store… but why would you? Lily Bee’s is a local family run business that specializes in weddings and events, they don’t do anything else and when you pick Lily Bee’s you join their family.


I got a chance recently to interview Heidi (the Queen bee) to get a behind the scenes look and absolutely fell in love with everything about Lily Bee’s Events + Floral.


Changing your last name?

To change or not to change… what do you think? This seems to be a hot topic at the moment and I figured I would put in a couple thoughts while the ball was already quickly rolling through our generation. It seems that around the world for as long as marriage has existed the bride is expected to replace her last name with the last name of her husband. Whether you find the name swap romantic or similar to a rancher branding his cattle, there’s one thing thats for certain… its your choice 🙂


As with saving your top tier, changing your last name is a wedding tradition thats almost always expected but not always practiced. A Harvard study found that women with college degrees were 2 – 4 times more likely to retain their last name as compared with women without college degrees. Why is it more likely or more socially accepted that a women with advanced education will keep her last name? My guess… thousands of years of gender politics, inequalities, and repetitive tradition have played havoc on our perception of personal choice.

name change

Some women keep their last name because of their profession, some because of all of the paperwork and new id’s they would need to get, some because they don’t like their husbands last name, and for some its just because they want to keep their own name. Whatever the reason is, its a personal choice thats yours to make and should make you happy.

Alternative options

  • Join both names – Long and Jones becomes “Long-Jones:
  • Name blending – Smith and Jamison becomes “Smithson”
  • Choose completely new name – Erickson and Thompson becomes “Williams”
  • Husband takes your name?

If you are on the fence about whether to change your last name, take some time to think about your name, your identity, your family, and what’s important to you. It’s your name and you should be the one deciding what to do with it.

Should we save our top tier?

One of the most frequent questions we receive is “should save the top tier for the one year anniversary”. Since I get to listen to the pro’s and con’s from dozens of brides every week I figured I could let everyone in on a little secret… there’s no clear winner or even a front runner in this debate.


Half of our brides don’t save the top tier because it takes up space in their freezer for a year, they want to include the top tier in their servings count, and year old frozen cake will never taste as good as the day it was made. The other half want to participate in a tradition that has been around longer than time because its suppose to bring good luck to their marriage. Whichever decision you make just rest assure you’re not alone in the frozen cake debate.

Here’s a quick history lesson from “In the olden days, couples saved the top tier of their wedding cake to use during the christening celebration for their first child, which everyone believed would come within the year following the wedding. Rather than find money to buy yet another cake or coming up with another elaborate design, the couple simply would store the top tier of their wedding cake in the icebox until needed in the following months.”

Couples today save the top tier in their freezer for the one-year anniversary only to find out that year old frozen cake isn’t what they wanted to wait all year long to sink their teeth into. To combat this issue we offer a discount to all returning clients looking to get a one year anniversary cake made fresh the same way it was made on your wedding day.

If you are thinking of saving your top tier follow our Official Wrapping Guideline:

  • Wrap the cake in multiple layers of plastic wrap
  • Put the cake in a box
  • Wrap the box in plastic wrap
  • Wrap the box in aluminum foil
  • Wrap the box again in plastic wrap
  • Then place it in the freezer

To unthaw your cake

  • Take the cake straight from the freezer and place it in the refrigerator
  • Wait at least 48 hours before removing plastic wrap and aluminum foil
  • Enjoy your cake.

I hope this helps a few brides make a more confident decision on whether or not to save the top tier. Thanks for reading, now I have to go back to my baby 🙂

Cake and Baby

Theo is 7 weeks old today and we’re making more cakes than ever before. Being a new mom / small business owner is proving to be quite the challenge but I’ve never been more excited about anything in my life. We’ve had a couple mis-steps with cake tasting double bookings (new mom brain) but we’re working out the kinks and thank everyone for their patience and support.

Theo at one month 🙂

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