By Matthew Trettel and Bruce Vassar
Wedding Trend Look Book by Matthew Trettel and Bruce Vassar Copyright © 2014 The Wedding Guys, Inc.
There are few experiences in life that will be as anticipated and meticulously planned as your wedding day. It is one of life’s celebrations that warms the heart and brings tears of
All rights reserved. No part of this
joy. With it, two lives come together; but for most the process of planning and preparation
book may be used or reproduced in
is much more than they had ever realized.
any manner whatsoever without written permission, except in the case of brief
Weddings used to be simple, and yes, they still can be. However, today you are
quotations embodied in critical articles
bombarded by media and social experiences, tracking the endless stream of ideas on
Pinterest and the opinions of often too many people. All this input, paired with the tick-tock countdown to the wedding day, can be overwhelming. That’s where we want to help!
Cover Photo by Staja Studios Inside Cover Photo by Studio Laguna
We wish to inspire you to dream outside of the box -- to create a day that embodies you
Editor: Samantha Jones
and your fiancé. A day that welcomes those that are most treasured to you, as you come together to celebrate your marriage in their company.
For information address The Wedding Guys, Inc.
On every page of the Wedding Trend Look Book, we want you to discover new ideas and
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new ways to do things. Our goal is to provide you with some clarity in creating a styled
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wedding event. This is the first time we are giving you full access to our creative minds,
providing you with the tricks of the trade in designing your own Signature Wedding.
www.theweddingguys.com So, take a deep breath, relax and let your adventure begin! Printed in the United States of America
By Matthew Trettel and Bruce Vassar
LUMINOSITY Undoubtably, lighting continues to be one of the hottest trends; so we are devoting our first pages of the Wedding Trend Look Book to the magic of luminosity. Lighting has the ability to transform space and can be as varied in its application as the ways we bring light into darkness.
Lighting brings great depth; illuminating volumes of space or accenting individual event elements. Luminosity for weddings can mean so much more than just LED up lighting and color washed walls. Creating emotion with light and color, while never letting the guests know the mechanics behind it, is a designer’s sleight of hand.
Consider the patterns and textures created as light refracts from different angles. It’s the luminosity that allows for the mood to be enhanced and will complete the look. One doesn’t often think of the moody tones that can be created with the use of very saturated light. These moody tones combined with the amber glow of candlelight, creates an entrancing effect for the afterglow lounge, at left.
We brought warm and cool tones together; converging to create a soft ethereal effect to the striking contemporary edge of our design. The trick for any designer is striking a Coppersmith Photography
balance of contrast between cool and fiery colors.
Lighting can take on graphic forms, drawing attention to important elements of the evening. These marquee style letters, at right, are constructed of rusted metal and Italian lights.
Something as easy as a directional sign doesnâ€™t just assist guests, but also allows for the element to be an architecturally designed accent piece. With three simple letters the space takes on a very chic rustic feel that is both warm and funky at the same time. The soft glow of Italian lights conjures up memories of summer nights and the casual ambiance of a great cafe. This sign sets the tone, produces a pop of interest and defines the experience ahead.
THE TRICK FOR ANY DESIGNER IS OF CONTRAST BETWEEN COOL AND FIERY COLORS.
Dan Norman Photography
STRIKING A BALANCE
We created an element of surprise by combining glowing stars, crystal beaded curtains and flickering candlelight for this ceremony setting. The refraction of light and varied dimensions allowed us to create a modern mood by combining these elements with other translucent materials like acrylic and glass. Elements that capture light and ones that are illuminated from within can be easily paired together.
By choosing incandescent lights, we took the edge off the sleek finishes which could tend to feel ultra modern and cold. The monochromatic warm amber glow of these pieces came together to create the
contemporary ceremony pictured here.
Within one space you can incorporate distinct juxtaposition with the right lighting design. For this ultra lounge, at right, cool tones of blue and purple combine with the amber glow of strategically placed uplights. In order to add drama to any space and create not only a source of illumination, but also another element to the overall decor, think about incorporating chandeliers. Anything is possible from glittering onyx crystal, to rustic metal ring fixtures.
Even the selection of light bulbs can have a significant impact on the overall effect. To create the warm glow of amber, you can use Edison bulbs. These vintage inspired filament bulbs are now widely available and come in a series of shapes and wattage. Their tone pairs well with candlelight and have a warmer glow than florescent bulbs.
WITHIN ONE SPACE YOU CAN JUXTAPOSITION WITH THE RIGHT LIGHTING DESIGN.
Steve Allen Photography
Accent lighting can provide a breathtaking enhancement to architectural details. For this â€˜Gothicâ€™ inspired ceremony, at left, we used uplights to spotlight elements while using LED backlighting to enhance the cathedral effect of the birch tree forest. These techniques added a sense of depth and mystery to the space.
At right, colored LED lighting fixtures create a dramatic effect when used to emphasize the drapery panels. The purple lighting gives this textured damask fabric an added richness and also a punch to the oversized corded tassels.
Lighting creates an effect unlike any other. Creative play with lighting will provide the extra special enhancement to your wedding environment.
DRAMATIC LIGHTING TECHNIQUES ADD AND INTEREST TO ANY SPACE.
Dan Norman Photography
Lauren B Photography
A SENSE OF DEPTH
POP CULTURE What does a pop of pink have to do with weddings? Right now maybe nothing, but within the next year don’t be surprised to see a pop of pink as a new wedding trend. How do we know? It’s simple, we’ve been trend spotting! One of the best ways to ensure your wedding is ahead of the trend curve, is to check out what is happening now in pop culture.
For us, we are always scanning the ‘what’s hot’ in the categories of interior design, culinary and lifestyle. Pop culture trends are usually easily translated into elements of the wedding celebration and incorporating them will ensure that your guests experience will relate to the latest craze; whether it is the trend colors they are seeing in fashion, the new culinary cues they get while dining out, or the patterns and design aesthetics that they might have just seen at Target®. Great design ideas are everywhere and by widening your horizons beyond the current trends in weddings, you will be able to create a signature experience.
In 2014, take your cue from the interior design industry. A pop of pink will replace that pop of red you may have remembered from a few seasons past. Graphic black and white will be hot, as will anything white; from the starker gallery white, to the more etherial sheer lacy whites. Tones in powdery pastels will also be big on the interior side which tie back to
the forecasted colors we’ll talk about later in the Color Story section.
The coordinated monochromatic look is resurfacing, so expect to see tone on tone looks emerging again in home interiors. Watch for monochromatic elements combined with the hot interior trend of textures of fringe and feathers. All of these interior trends blend naturally with the design of any wedding.
When we look to the culinary scene we are really inspired. Move over cupcakes, trending in fine dining are savory hybrid desserts. These house-made artisan goodies include berry galettes, salted caramel soufflĂŠs and pavlova with figs and nuts. Most recently country chic mini pie recipes of apple, cherry and the one we love â€“ rhubarb have come to the forefront! Consider deconstructing the classic desserts and creating a trio of bite-size mini-desserts for each guest to savor; extending their dining experience.
HOUSE MADE ARTESIAN DESSERTS TWIST ON THE CUPCAKE FAD.
Lauren B Photography
PROVIDE A NEW
Lifestyle is the third element we look at to trend spot. How we live offers great inspiration that can help define the wedding. The craft movement in general has exploded with almost anything imaginable available on Etsy. There is a sense of authenticity and something extra special about anything that is hand made. These elements can be an interesting addition and often even a highlight of the wedding. Introducing guests to artesian elements or highlighting a local artist that has handcrafted a favor especially for each guest creates a lasting impression.
Eat, drink and be Married!
Whether your event calls for the tranquil privacy of a secluded island or the
grandeur of a historic urban penthouse, choosing your venue should be the hardest thing you have to do. Our professional staff will attend to every detail, ensuring a truly customized event whether its a party of 20 or 400.
Beverages are no different. The craft distillery phenomenon is certainly at itâ€™s peak with brew pubs and distillers becoming the local go-to for unique variations. So consider serving cider, local wines and microbrews.
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CONSIDER LOCAL MICROBREWS OR
Melissa Fiene Photography
LOCALLY DISTILLED LIQUEURS TO ENLIVEN THE FESTIVITIES.
COLOR STORY We take notice of color every season and color choice plays a major role in the evolution of any wedding design. We always start by determining the ‘feel’ of the wedding experience, not the ‘look’, so, color is NEVER the first thing that we decide on when creating a signature wedding. As the experience develops, we look to the fashion runways and hot home interior trends to best align our vision for the wedding day with the freshest palate of current colors.
Because color plays such a significant role in the creation of the day, you will likely get tired of hearing, ‘What are your wedding colors?’ Even just a few years ago color for weddings meant primarily what you were going to dress your bridesmaids in. Color today will, in the end, weave through almost every element that we touch; from the graphic of the invitation, to how the food is presented on the plate.
Color can include your lighting, linens, decor elements and yes, even your culinary decisions. With any good interior design, we suggest picking a palate of color, not just one. Remember to use color like an artist, not pick a color as your ‘theme’. Even for a monochromatic look you are going to want a variety of shades, not just the exact same color repeated everywhere. A strong palate will combine four to five colors and include all of the tones you are using among your design elements. Consider what are your neutrals,
dominant and accent colors and use them appropriately. For accent colors, a good rule of thumb from interior design is to repeat the colors in three different elements.
Stumped on putting colors together? Look to mother nature as she pairs the most inspiring of all color combinations. Cut open a papaya for example to see the vibrant orange that pairs beautifully with the softer greens, yellows and pop of black.
Pantone® is the color authority and a great resource to discover the upcoming color trends. For 2014 Radiant Orchid is Pantone’s Color of the Year; a warm purple with notes of fuchsia, purple and pink. It’s already walking the fashion runways and will be ever present on the red carpet. Radiant Orchid will surely be hot for cosmetics since the distinctive hue blends both cool and warm undertones.
Yes, even your lipstick or blush can enter into your conversation of wedding colors!
LOOK TO HOLLYWOOD’S FASHIONS FOR A TREND COLOR FORECAST.
A-Motion Media Productions
ideas & inspiration
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INES DISANTO DENNIS BASSO VICTOR HARPER Jordan Yeh
Courtesy of Ines DiSanto
FASHION Fashionista’s your moment has arrived! Every bride has her own style and vision for her wedding day look. When it comes to selecting your wedding gown, there are more looks to select from then in past seasons. Trending for 2014 we see the rebirth of the sleeves, mysterious illusion necklines and ‘Red Carpet’ evening gown silhouettes. Gowns filled with sparkle and sophisticated silhouettes are thanks to the popular PBS television series Downton Abbey and the 2013 hit movie Gatsby. These pop culture phenomenons have designers once again inspired by finely textured and hand-beaded fabrics.
If hip hugging is the preferred style to show off your curves, you are in luck since the mermaid style is back! Combined with the sweetheart neckline, the gowns at left are staples this season from the bridal fashion week runways.
Unlike the seasons following another pop culture phenomenon, the Royal Wedding of Kate Middleton and Prince William where lace became extremely popular, we now begin seeing flowing fabrics taking center stage including silk satin and charmeuse. 2014 will also move silhouettes forward; dazzled with heavy embroidery illusion bodices, sparkling and beaded embellishments. For a number of seasons designers have been working to
create a version of the sleeve. From the onset of the strapless gown, it has been difficult
to turn the tide so to speak, even with the popularity of Kate Middleton’s gown. In 2014 the help of the illusion fabrics have created beautiful sleeves that brides will embrace with
graceful detailing and romantic appeal. Taking many different forms, sleeves have been embraced on the red carpet; now they transition to the wedding aisle. Sleeves are there to cover the arms in some form of fashion. Sleeves descend from the neckline but itâ€™s the extension of the sleeves that complement the overall silhouette.
When we saw this silk crepe illusion neckline sheath gown and the flow of the cape with the gown, at right, it was like water flowing. It is a beautiful billowing train effect that will capture your guests by surprise at the ceremony. The soft shoulder long sleeve gown is stunning with itâ€™s hand stitched, embellished, embroidered ivy pattern on the sleeve. Notice there is no hard line or cuff, allowing the sleeve to vanish into the hand. An evening gown look dazzled with crystals and a demure bow belt, the three-quarter-sleeve allows for a very chic and simple design. The glimmer on the sleeve is accented by the movement of the garment.
SLEEVES RETURN REALLY COMPLETING THE Dan Lecca
SILHOUETTE AND ALLOWING FOR EMBELLISHMENT.
MORE DETAIL AND
Courtesy Claire Pettibone
INES DISANTO ULLA MAIJA MARK ZUNINO Dan Lecca
Courtesy Ines DiSanto
The illusion necklines for the designers’ 2014 collections took center stage on the runways this season. We encourage all brides to embrace the elegant option with lace and beaded appliqués providing a stunning alternative to the standard strapless gown.
The designers are using illusion as a tool in their fabric selection to create the effect of a strapless silhouette, while still providing a sheer covering to the neckline and now even sleeves. Illusion fabric can be as varied in it use as the choice of sleeve, from long fitted sleeves to short cap sleeves, or even no sleeves at all. The illusion neckline now plays with crystals, beads, pearls and on some gowns is so sheer it creates an effect that looks as if these are tattoos of embellishment. What we love about the use of illusion is how it elongates the gown, drawing attention to the face of the bride.
The lace that is so delicate at the neckline, far left, is also echoed throughout the layers of silk tulle fabric creating a translucent effect. The silk crepe gown with short sleeves of appliqués and embroidered floral patterns look so delicate with the illusion bateau neckline. The delicate and translucent diaphanous overskirt over a narrow long or short underskirt, blends an air of radiant sophistication in a classic modern look with some fabrics so faint you can’t tell if there is even illusion fabric. Different color tones of fabrics utilized as the undergarment allows for the lace appliqués and illusion-patterned neckline
to lift up from the silhouette.
Deep V necklines are cut to accent the line and stature of the body. The fabric plays a crucial look in the overall fit and each fabric tells itâ€™s own story.
The delicate lightness of tulle layering blends romance and femininity when scattered with three-dimensional flowers and metallic thread work which accentuates the lace pattern, at right. Flowing overskirts of black English net with colored embroidered flowers gives a vintage inspired look. This gown, at center, feels though it could walk right off the set of Downton Abbey. The sophisticated silk satin or Charmeuse of the 1940 provides a glimpse back to the era of Hollywood royalty in the gown at far right. The simple draping technique of this halter gown is accented with a classic bow.
DEEP PLUNGING NECKLINES ACCENTUATE THE NECK AND SHOULDERS.
ELIE SAAB CLAIRE PETTIBONE PNINA TORNAI Dan Lecca
Courtesy Claire Pettibone
MARK ZUNINO PNINA TORNAI INES DISANTO Courtesy Ines DiSanto
Deep plunging necklines are not the only design that’s hot off the runway. For 2014, you can also count on the deep plunging backs, at left, creating a sophisticated yet sensual silhouette for the ‘Red Carpet’ bride who is willing to venture into the more daring.
A plunging back does not have to always mean a wide open back. You can enhance the appearance of the back such as crisscrossing lines of strings or jewelry strands, or you can utilize embellished illusion fabric that will enhance, but not take away, from the overall look. With the plunging back, as with strapless gowns, we strongly believe they are not for everyone. If you are considering a plunging sexy back gown, make sure your back is toned and have the posture to carry it off.
DEEP PLUNGING BACKS OFFER A LOOK THAT IS TRULY RED CARPET.
Let’s not forget the men in the wedding! Yes, ‘Plaid’ is in! As we see bold patterns evolve into many aspects of weddings, we also see plaid coming to life in 2014 alluding to a more involved, complicated, dapper, demanding and distinguished sense of style for men.
Not just in a Tartan Kilt, but also as suits and tuxedo jackets, plaid is an unexpected alternative to the everyday or formal dress code. The look is presently enjoying a modish revival that lands outside men’s standard routines on the runways of Italy, France and Russia.
While a bold statement by men can be visible in many patterns, keep in mind plaid can be used in accents for ties, scarf’s, pocket squares, socks and yeseven shoes.
PLAID IS MORE INVOLVED, A COMPLICATED DISTINGUISHED STYLE FOR MEN.
While plaid may adopt a new more avant-garde approach, the traditional wedding suit is moving forward in 2014.
While we believe nothing will replace
formal occasions, we have been seeing an insurgence in variations on a theme for a formal look such as longer coats, higher collars, debonair ascots and yes, even equestrian boots for a Euro flare.
Photos by Coppersmith Photography
the formality of a tuxedo for life’s most
The business suit is also evolving with bold stripe patterns, bright ties and array of pocket square collections as slimmer trousers and shorter jackets are echoing the hipster movement of Mad Men.
NOTHING WILL REPLACE THE FORMALITY OF
A TUXEDO FOR LIFE’S MOST FORMAL
Since 1921, Heimie’s Haberdashery has outfitted gentlemen with tailored clothing for every occasion. Whether ready-to-wear, or custom made from a wide variety of fabrics, Heimie’s provides the best in suits and formalwear With our full-service traditional barbershop, a hot lather shave and a fresh cut will be the perfect complement to your wedding day look With experienced and master tailors, and a classic historic aesthetic, Heimie’s Haberdashery is truly a great place to be a man.
OCCASIONS. 400 St. Peter Street, St. Paul, Minnesota 55102 | 651-224-2354 | www.heimies.com
GRAPHIC Everything is going graphic, and bold patterns are ‘in’ everywhere. From the bold black and white we are seeing in interiors, to the multicolored prints we are seeing in fashion. BOLD is the statement for 2014. Pattern can be used in so many ways. We like to take elements that are generally devoid of graphics and make them ‘pop’. A bold graphic statement is a great replacement for the standard white aisle runner and adds a big impact to the ceremony design. We’ve conjured up anything from red polka-dots to a 1960’s retro pattern to create a punch right from the start. For an all-over patterned effect, we’ve sourced heavy upholstery fabrics which work well for the aisle. Fabric stores are great inspiration. On our New York Bridal Fashion Week trips, we often find ourselves at Mood (made famous by Project Runway) bringing back the latest patterns that catch our eye.
Customizing your aisle runner with printed graphics is also an option. Consider taking a graphic detail from your invitation and create an emblem with your names and wedding date. This is generally done at the start of the aisle, but we like to do something closer to where you will say your vows so that this featured detail shows up in your wedding photos.
All-over patterns are hot for stationery, at left, whether as an invitation enclosure, menu or place card. We find it particularly interesting when these bold graphics are incorporated Coppersmith Photography
into letterpress invitations which adds an additional dimension with the depressions and varied colors.
Typography can also be used as it’s own graphic element and large bold designs with perfectly placed type make your design dramatic and impactful.
Graphic type can show up in unique places like these fantastic cuff links, at right. Personalized with the couple’s initials and wedding date, these not only make a great keepsake, they add a fun graphic pop as they peek out from the cuffs of the jacket sleeves.
Think about how graphic elements can tell a story and be dotted across the wedding in unexpected places. Consider graphics on candles, drink menus, table tops and mirrors.
THINK ABOUT HOW GRAPHIC ELEMENTS CAN UNEXPECTED PLACES.
BE UTILIZED IN
YOUR FASHION PLAYGROUND YOUR FASHION PLAYGROUND
Surprise elements continue to appear in invitations, from exciting new materials to techniques that include metallic foils and new printing methods. These add yet another level to the graphic elements of the wedding.
Enhancements in specialty services like laser cutting and die cutting have also made available the most intricate and delicate graphic designs. Almost anything is imaginable with laser cut designs that can range from a simple card, to layers that weave together like a pop up book. The graphic and tactile pieces come together in the design elements of the laser cut invitation.
B R I D A L
S H O W E R S
H O N E Y M O O N
G I F T
O P E N I N G S
C U S T O M
B R I D A L
J E W E L R Y
LOOK YOUR BEST B A C H E L O R E T T E
P A R T I E S
C O U P L E S
S H O W E R S
G R O O M S
D I N N E R
R E C E P T I O N S
The most amazing designs we have discovered come from friendships we made while in London covering the Royal Wedding. The stunning design at left is from Cutture Limited, based in London.
LASER CUTTING TECHNIQUES CREATE DELICATE DESIGNS
THAT WILL DAZZLE YOUR GUESTS.
Vo t e d “ B E S T N E W U P S C A L E B O U T I Q U E I N M I N N E S OTA ” b y hours 10-9 MON-SAT & 11-6 SUN
MEN’S & WOMEN’S COLLECTIONS 1637 WEST END BOULEVARD ST. LOUIS PARK MN
hours 10-6 MON-SAT & 11-4 SUN OR BY APPOINTMENT
WOMEN’S COLLECTIONS 5045 FRANCE AVENUE S. EDINA MN
After all, first impressions are lasting impressions. Invitations don’t necessarily mean paper anymore. There are so many interesting ways to deliver the wedding details.
Unique stationery materials will certainly set your wedding apart. Consider elements like acrylic, metal or even wood veneers. The introduction of your wedding via the ‘Save the Date’ card and the wedding invitation will be your first opportunity.
Finally, consider a unique container for the invitation; metal clam shell boxes, wood slip cover boxes, acrylic jewel cases or even cardboard mailing tubes. Create a graphic punch with customized postage or even a eclectic collection of multiple stamps on the invitation envelope.
NEW MATERIALS AND TECHNIQUES PROVIDE THE INSPIRATION TO DREAM OUTSIDE THE BOX.
Photos: Noah Wolf
BRANDED Brand transcends almost every part of life. We identify with our favorite stores and products because of their strong brand identity. Just as companies use the influence of image to differentiate their products in the marketplace, couples are, in effect, doing the same thing as they set their weddings apart from all the others.
Consistency is key. Through the incorporation and repetition of strong graphic elements and color palette, you weave a common thread through all aspects of the wedding. Repeated throughout the many visual pieces of the wedding, the ‘brand’ can be seen not only in the stationery elements like the invitations and programs, but almost anything imaginable. Incorporating brand can be as simple as these chocolate meringue favors, at left, contained inside a small silver box with a clear window lid. We placed one of these favors above each place setting. Inside the lid we used a laser-cut monogram creating panes through which you could see the delicious treats.
Examples of the brand can take on almost any form; from a commissioned silhouette of the couple, to a series of complimentary engagement photos; or even the modern monogram ‘logo’ pictured at left. Just as branding can be done well, it can also end very badly. When we think of branding, we take into account all of the pieces of the event; the shapes,
textures, aromas, colors and overall ‘feel’ of the wedding. What works for branding in one wedding doesn’t naturally translate into another wedding.
By selecting relevant and authentic opportunities to express the coupleâ€™s unique style and personality, we are able to translate their signature brand into every event. Creating a branded wedding is so much more than logo stamping every element. A good wedding brand takes advantage of materials used and even canvases that could be easily overlooked. Consider large blank surfaces or awkward spaces that might just need a little help.
There are few things as instantly identifiable as the stylized Bat Signal from the Batmanâ„˘ series, with the iconic winged bat figure projected through the night sky. Brand ideas can be borrowed from almost any source of inspiration, so we borrowed this idea and created a custom gobo and projected our graphic icon on the exterior of the venue, at right.
BRANDING IDEAS CAN BE BORROWED PIECE OF POP CULTURE.
FROM ALMOST ANY
The concept of brand is best illustrated by the wedding of Katie + Mike. With the locationâ€™s modern â€˜Gallery Whiteâ€™ aesthetic and its world-class culinary experience, we knew that the overall design needed to have impact. The design also needed to be clean and crisp so the masterful culinary experience could take center stage.
We decided that the polka-dot would be our graphic inspiration and dots were used throughout the design; from dotted pillows used for the ceremony and afterglow party, to the specific vessels used in decor. The dot was even considered when plating the courses of the dinner. With our design aesthetic taking shape, we relied on the talents of
monogram logo for the wedding. The final design was the perfect graphic element taking a modern twist on the
a graphic designer to create a custom
monogram using ‘K’ and ‘M’ for Katie + Mike, incorporating our white dot motif. The icon was perfect for us to infuse into the varied pieces of the wedding.
Naturally this was incorporated into the invitation ensemble, but so was the palette of soft colors that were revealed though die cut holes that allowed the guests to see through to each of the four layers of the multi-piece invitation.
We used cut vinyl graphics in metallic silver to create customized toasting flutes. The monogram was also used to create the unity candle and we cleverly produced an aisle runner from graphics of colored polka dots adhered to the floor, leading to the altar. Even the entrance featured a window cling with the couple’s monogram, at right.
Real People. Real Emotion. Real Photographs.
AN ICON THAT CAN BE USED
320.529.8779 www.yuppyphoto.com firstname.lastname@example.org
FORMS ADDS DIMENSION AND INTEREST.
Directions from the ceremony to the cocktail hour were noted by dots placed throughout corridors of the hotel. Foil stamped coasters created an impact at the bar as guests discovered the iconic graphic even under their cocktail.
Our concept didn’t stop with the more
top photos by erin johnson
tangible. Even the culinary experience was developed around the brand. Each hors d’oeuvres represented the color pallet of the wedding—the beef satay, at left included a lavender garnish and pale green dipping sauce; and the pork dumplings were accompanied by soy sauce in a small white circular dish.
Carefully considering unique ways to create repetition through many different forms allows for a branded experience from start to finish.
BRANDING DOESN’T STOP WITH THE TANGIBLES, EXTEND Coppersmith Photography
Start your special day in stylish splendor in L’etoile, our exclusive bridal preparation room. L’etoile was designed to put the spotlight right where it belongs – on you.
THROUGH THE CULINARY EXPERIENCE. 651-292-9292
LOUNGE Who doesn’t love to party? Yet ‘party’ means something different to everyone. Since weddings have become so diverse, the traditional sit-down dinner and dance is being replaced by a more interactive and social setting. This has transformed the elements of what was considered ‘the standard’ reception and the introduction of lounge areas has had a major impact.
Lounge can take on as many different forms as you can imagine. Instead of the cocktail hour with high top tables and passed hors d’oeuvres, we suggest creating a varied landscape with a built out bar. Include soft seating with furniture to define an environment that feels more relaxed and inviting for your guests.
Just as all parts of the wedding experience have evolved, one aspect that is always constant is the need to create a sense of place. Lounge generally starts with developing an environment. Dimming the overhead lighting and using uplighting can signal that the hurried activities of the busy wedding day have mellowed and now it is time to kick back relax and enjoy a cocktail. Creating several seating options gives your guests the chance to enjoy conversation. People naturally like to form conversation groups, combining in clusters and pods of seating allows them to do this. We like to add oversized coffee tables
Lauren B Photography
to display statement pieces of floral, while providing guests a convenient place to set down their drink.
Lounges can easily be added around your dance floor for people to enjoy the entertainment. They can also be created in quieter surroundings where guests can have intimate conversations.
For this lounge, at right, we used modern red sofas as a statement piece. An acrylic bar lit from behind helped set the mood while offering refreshments to guests. Small groupings of chairs and end tables or coffee tables are great areas for small gatherings. Small floral accents for the coffee table completed the look.
Grab and go beverages made it easy for guests to help themselves to a beverage and then get right back to their conversations.
ADDING A LOUNGE CREATES A SENSE OF RELAXATION WHILE VIBE TO THE SPACE.
GIVING A CHILL
The fun thing about a club vibe is creating a unique layout, amping up the atmosphere and then adding the perfect entertainment. We think about each aspect that helps make the space feel warm, inviting and interesting. Pillows are great pieces that can help bring in your accent color or a repetition of patterns or textures you have chosen.
The lounge concept can overtake your entire reception and we create receptions that are a mix of lounge and smaller table configurations making the entire evening a more organic experience. Sheer walls, at right, can create an interesting partition between the lounge and other parts of the reception. These provide a little separation while still
feeling part of the whole.
Rental furniture is now more widely available and pulling together pieces will add a great punch. Barstools and club chairs are available so you can truly create a lounge that will fit any style. Dividing the space into several areas will make the overall reception feel more intimate, leaving a spot for dancing, lounging, eating and mingling.
Some designs can be very elaborate and some quite simple, it all depends on the room you are working in, your design aesthetic and your vision of how your guests will enjoy their evening. In designing a lounge keep in perspective the room is for relaxing and socializing. The design should encompass some, if not all, of the five senses including sight, touch, smell, hearing and taste. Consider creating your own lounge and you will find your guests enjoying the space!
DIVIDING THE SPACE INTO SEVERAL AREAS Coppersmith Photography
WILL MAKE THE RECEPTION FEEL MORE INTIMATE.
MIXOLOGY Slide on over signature drinks, the crafted cocktail is trending for 2014. A far cry from the pre-ordained signature drink, the mixology movement is about an admiration for the ingredients, original recipes, and finding new ways to highlight flavors through beverages. Taking center stage at the cocktail reception, the mixologist becomes part of the show. Mixology is not just about great tasting cocktails, it’s also the science that hypnotizes guests as they are entertained by the art of mixing great libations.
If you’ve experienced the magic of a mixologist in a nightclub or special event, you know what we are talking about: the mixer can be a fresh locally grown fruit or a delightfully muddled ginger cucumber base with a splash of champagne and drops of an exotic elixir dispensed right in front of you.
The introduction of flavored ice cubes, misting essences, gin connoisseurships, hard ciders, dispensed slushy cocktails, locally made ryes and bourbons, and hand crafted beer, and local wines are all coming to the forefront at today’s cocktail parties. Like chefs who are culinary designers and devout about the origin of every single ingredient, today’s mixologists are no different. Mixologists are more than mere pourers of beverages. They are known for growing their own herbs and tending home gardens; some even making
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their own tonics and bitters. The cocktail is becoming an extension of the kitchen so to speak. It’s a culinary art form of the liquid kind.
Interesting garnishes are the signature of the mixologist. Think sprigs of rosemary or burnt orange slices. If you want to introduce the hottest garnish, we recommend bacon. We are seeing it everywhere. This would pair perfectly with a bacon infused liquor such as a whiskey, bacon and maple cocktail. Anything garden fresh, like rhubarb, is all the rage with a designed cocktail such as the Rhubarb Bellini, Rhubarb Fizz and Rhubarb Sour.
Beyond the drink itself and the entertainment of the mixologist, the creation of the bar itself, as a visual element to the celebration, is often overlooked. Styling and creating a bar is crucial to the experience associated with many chic lounges. Allowing your wedding bar to showcase the mastery
MIXOLOGISTS EXTRACT UNIQUE FLAVORS FROM TONICS AND BITTERS.
of the bartending craft of mixology will set you apart. Instead of creating several bars, consider one large bar that makes a bigger statement. This can also create an extension of, and a backdrop, for
Photos by Lauren B Photography
Think about the creation of a striking back bar with rows of bottles and sizable accessories. A large bar will catch the well deserved attention of your guests and call it out as a focal point. Taking the stemware out of the service crates and making a statement with perfectly lined rows will add impact and presence to the bar as well. This can also be done with
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the bottles of wine and liquors as well to complete the look of the bar and assist guests with the selection of options.
DESIGNING ONE LARGE BAR AS A STATEMENT WILL DRAW FOCUS AND
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The bar no longer has to be stationary.
great way for wait staff to elevate the dinner service. Start with an aperitif to spark the appetite. Serving suggestions for these light, refreshing drinks might include a champagne palate cleanser. The ending of a fabulous dinner can be introduced with different types of sweet after-dinner drinks. These distilled spirits often have hidden yet detectable flavors, including fruits, nuts, and spices.
When picking an after-dinner drink, you can let the meal dictate the type you order, or you can simply choose your old standby. Whatever your choice, make it
Photo by Noah Wolf Photography, Styled by The Wedding Guys
wheeled cordial cart. Cordials are a
Photo by Erika McCauley
Take the show on the road, with a
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enjoyable and drink it leisurely, relaxing in the satisfaction of a meal or with the wedding cake.
CORDIAL CARTS CREATE INTERACTION AND HELP SIGNAL
THE END OF THE MEAL.
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TASTE Who isn’t a “Foodie” these days? Thanks to the Food Network our culinary horizons have been expanded. Food is not just a part of the wedding checklist. For us it is an opportunity to treat your guests, expand their palate and excite their taste buds. We love to open their minds to items they normally wouldn’t ever think to try and watch them be astonished!
We ALWAYS customize a menu. The decision of designing a wedding with a menu packet is never an option for us. A customized menu allows us to have fun with the culinary design. Honestly, chefs are artists of taste and presentation so we say, “let them paint.” We like to give culinary teams a challenge such as adapting the old standby wine and cheese pairing station, into something new like an interactive beer or stout pairing experience. When we put a chef to the challenge, the result was chocolate glazed scallops with locally produced stout for pairings, at left.
Today, we see trends in action stations, not just for the dinner, but starting with the cocktail reception. After all, the cocktail reception is where fun and interaction really begins. Mini items are key for action stations, so small plates are encouraged, or sometimes no plates at
all, relying on napkins and unique serviceware instead.
Trending items include mini sandwiches served open-face like Ruebens and Rachels. Asian inspired flavor combinations are everywhere, so why not change things up with grab and go Japanese rolls. These rolls, at right, incorporate grilled shrimp, masagotogarashi aioli and wakame salad. Cleverly displayed on open-backed book cases, guest can grab a bite from the front of the bookcase while the service staff secretly refills from the other side.
Many times the trick is in finding creative service vessels. Spoons and tasting forks can present single serving items like Mini Lobster Thermidor and frozen lemon curd topped with Absolut citron ‘caviar’. Speaking of hors d’oeuvres on spoons, try Asian inspired combos like Ginger Beef over Coconut Rice and Thai Beef
CREATE MENU PLANNING CAN PROVIDE NEW INNOVATIVE FOOD SERVICE.
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Any culture’s comfort food, when shrunk to hors d’ oeuvre size, is going to be devoured. However, sometimes what is trendy is not so new, but can actually be a new twist on an old favorite. The good old Deviled Egg from the neighborhood cocktail parties of the 1950’s is a perfect example of this, but why stop with the traditional recipe? We would expand the recipe by thinking about what goes with eggs.
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So think about bacon, shrimp, salsa, spinach, and ketchup or steak sauce.
Trendy items including Peppered Vodka Gazpacho, Citrus Vodka Ceviche, or Chilled Spicy Avocado Mango Ceviche Photo by Cody Buckaler
are great when served in individual shot glasses.
We continue to see small plates as an experiential trend, but even more noticeable to us are multiple courses of small portions such as simple steak
Photo by Cody Buckaler
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delectable bites creates quite the stir. New techniques of poaching and steaming foods in smoky liquids, teas, coffee, beer and wines in place of water will be all the rage in 2014.
DECONSTRUCTED SALADS WITH NOUVEAU ACCOMPANIMENTS AMP UP THIS TRADITIONAL COURSE. Photo by Robert Evans
If you thought people were getting tired of chicken, get ready to think again. Luxe recipe preparations of chicken and bone in chicken are going to be in. Look for roast chicken stuffed with foie gras, black truffles and brioche. Root vegetables and locally sourced ingredients will be a hit this year.
Bringing in a sushi chef will wow your guests. The fun part about sushi for us is also the presentation of color and textures where the food also becomes art. Sushi is very experiential and allows guests the option to interact with the chef and sometimes even the opportunity to create their own tasty roll. Of course sake pairs perfectly with sushi, so consider using cordial glasses to pair the two together with a sake tasting.
AN EXPERIENTIAL ACTION STATION YOUR GUESTS WITH ENTICING OPTIONS.
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TABLETOP Tabletop is often the design element at a wedding with the most potential. Sure couples think about the linen and a centerpiece, but for most it stops there. When we think of tabletop design, we look for ways to be creative and the opportunity to really have fun.
For 2014, we want to push the envelope to encourage you to play with all the varied aspects of table settings. Think about styling each place setting, not just setting the table. Consider the multiple layers of plates, then mix them up. Mix and match is hot in home interiors, so donâ€™t be afraid to mix up your china.
To style this table, at left, we tipped over a martini glass to house a chocolate truffle balanced on the edge of a cocktail fork, all designed to look like an olive from a spilled over martini. This fit perfectly with our mid-century modern inspired aesthetic.
Table selection will significantly affect the overall look to the design. Long harvest style tables, for example, provide an opportunity to design elongated centerpieces. However, the same elongated floral centerpieces would not work on a round table. Table selection will affect significant pieces of your design and is an integral part of the decision process. Selecting complimenting pieces to style the table is your first opportunity to think of the
table os a whole.
Each wedding requires its own tabletop design as you will have many table choices and styles to select from. Will it be high square tables with stools or standard seating for 2, 4, 6, 8, 10 or more people? Keeping the layout of the tables in mind while planning the space will assist in creating the overall environment. Careful placement of the tables will assists with the flow of the room. It can make the difference between something that is dynamic and interesting or the traditional banquet setting, which is neither.
As the tone-on-tone monochromatic and all-white looks come to the forefront, we look to ways to combine both. The white china and white linens, at right, could have a tendency to feel sterile, so our vision included a pop of color in the space to counter balance the
ADDING VISUAL LAYERS TO AN ALL WHITE CREATE DIMENSION.
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all-white look. In bringing purple light into the reception and the use of wall mirrors for tabletops, the table takes on an interesting depth. The flatware and stemware seem as though they float above the surface of the table.
If eclectic is your inspiration, multiple china patterns even within the same genre make an impact. Consider mixing antique china patterns and utilizing different cups and saucers with the coffee service to change things up. Traditional doesnâ€™t just translate to matchy â€“ matchy Laurie Schneider Photography
or dripping in intricate gold baroque patterns. Traditional elements like a paisley or damask pattern can be incorporated in a modern way when printed on glass or wood. Taking an old world design and utilizing it in a fashion forward way will be unexpected.
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THERE IS AN ART TO THE EXCEPTIONAL
From the popularity of farm to table, to the urban hipster looks, tabletop designs can be so varied. Elements in contrasting styles add dimension to the tabletop. An intricate formal china pattern can be mixed with wicker chargers and plain white dinnerware to create the country chic look, at left.
When it has to be perfect, setting the table requires measuring each element. Flatware is measured from the edge of the table, the stemware from the edge of the plates and chargers. Align the seating from the edge of the table so the chair gently brushes the linen and is not tucked under the table. Precision is extremely important to achieve the look of uniformity and perfection.
CREATIVE STYLING OF YOUR TABLETOP
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CAN EVEN INCLUDE A BOW TIE NAPKIN RING.
Not all designs call for this type of precision. Consider the hipster table, at right, that is a bit more eclectic. Perfectly placed items would counteract the easier carefree feel of the table. Consider the unexpected to accent the tablescape. Just when you think straws and orange sodas were only for kids; surprise, they also become a great decor element.
As in anything related to dĂŠcor and overall environmental design, we look outside of the wedding industry and look at interior design, fashion and restaurant entertaining. Itâ€™s our creative minds that meld it all together and create a tabletop that is a conversation piece. The trick is to know when to take it over the top and when to pull back. We call it editing. Knowing when you have passed a point of no return and then allowing yourself to edit will help refine the look.
ADDING ECLECTIC AND UNUSUAL ELEMENTS TO THE TABLETOP DRAWS ADDED ATTENTION TO DETAILS. EarleBrown.com
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STYLED FLORAL To us there is a distinction between wedding planners and wedding designers. Similarly, there is a distinction between wedding flowers and styled floral. Many couples treat reception flowers as an after thought, following their selection of personal flowers such as bouquets and boutonnieres. Intrinsically flowers should be brought into the design and styling of the wedding as a whole. While we believe floral is a key element for a wedding, in 2014 styled flowers that coordinate with all aspects of the wedding design are the way to go. Like the design of a lace pattern in fabrics, floral assists in enhancing the details of the wedding weaving together throughout all of the elements.
As an organic form, floral provides three-dimensional textures that can enhance certain design elements. Styled floral is when flowers are used in non-traditional or innovative ways. The acrylic panel adorned with phalaenopsis orchids and bear grass, at left, is unexpected, allowing the delicate smooth texture of the orchids to enhance the clear smooth surface of the acrylic. The bear grass becomes a flowing sculptural aspect; intertwining with the orchids to bring a threading whimsy to the contemporary feel of the
Sometimes designing flowers is not so much about the volume as it is about strategic placement. Clearly we all love over-the-top arrangements and they do have their place at a wedding, but when you are selecting styled floral look, for thoughtfully designed placements that blend with the movement of the room. Often, the smallest floral can also have great impact.
Scent is often underutilized or even not considered when designing the floral pieces. This can be both a missed opportunity or a fatal mistake, depending on how the scent of the flowers plays with the overall ambiance and more significantly impacts the menu.
Lime green citrus colored kissing balls were paired with halved grapefruits for the design at right. By pulling the
AROMAS CAN PLAY AN IMPORTANT PART ATMOSPHERE SO CONSIDER FRAGRANCE CAREFULLY.
IN CREATING THE
punch of citrus into the floral design, we allowed the grapefruit to not just be a visual element, but also a refreshing scent incorporated into the presentation. Incorporating the citrus scent throughout the design ensemble, we were able to capitalize on the aroma to make a connection with the citrus inspired menu items.
Placing artistically designed arrangements in the lounge setting, at left, gives that hip look to the environment. Consider three matching vessels with three different types of flowers in the same monochromatic family color, it gives visual eye teasing texture and variances to the color.
CONTAINER SELECTION CAN DRAMATICALLY
AFFECT THE OVERALL LOOK OF THE STYLED FLORAL.
Covering an entire table with flowers and weaving the place setting within the floral branches is not out of the question. To have a place setting completely surrounded by floral is creative, but also knowing when to pull back is important. If budget matters, interjecting different vessels and styles can also create a full effect on any table, while maximizing dollars spent.
When using long tables, think of ways to elongate the floral design. Tight compact arrangements can minimize the impact of the floral, but when cleverly extended with driftwood, at right, the centerpiece becomes a dramatic structure. Contrasting vases or accessories add a pop to the overall arrangement and unique florals like thistle or succulents bring in new color options to counteract the more expected florals.
CONSIDER CLEVER WAYS TO ELONGATE THE TABLETOP DESIGN ELEMENTS LIKE DRIFTWOOD.
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Traditional flowers like roses can make a fresh impact when used in clusters. Common elements draw more attention when done en mass. It can be as simple as laying bunches of roses on their side and having them cascade out of a vessel surrounded by mercury glass containers and candles, at left.
Styled floral may have you looking to elements you would have never even considered, like forced branches. These branches become even more impactful when placed under the oversized glass cloche, at right. An open rose adds just enough color to balance the mossy greens that cover the wooden base.
CLUSTERS OF FLOWERS LOOK LUSH WHEN USED WITH UNIQUE STYLING.
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STATEMENT PIECES With each wedding we design, we like to think of the elements that can be amplified to create a wow factor to truly take our couples, as well as their guests, by surprise. Just as an oversized piece of jewelry becomes a statement piece to an outfit, so does the design element that creates an impactful impression. With statement pieces the impact is immediate and the look will set the tone.
Large floral arrangements can make a big statement. We call them ‘impact pieces’. Placement of large arrangements, visible as guests arrive at the ceremony or the reception venue, leaves quite the impression. Often overlooked, the entrance is so important in creating a sense of arrival. For us, these are the opportunities we look for first, knowing the more obvious uses of floral fall easily into place.
We like to create masses of floral together for the maximum impact. A few big pieces will always get more attention than many smaller arrangements. The flowing orchid arrangement, at left, elicits an immediate response upon arrival. It clearly says, “this reception is going to be different!” With the addition of a little accent lighting, the impression is stunning. The knack of infusing space with unexpected touches to maximize impact makes an impressive statement.
Sometimes the simplest forms can have the biggest impact when combined together in
multiples to create a statement piece. Think about any large voids of space you might have at the venue and ask yourself how you can use these to your advantage. If you have cavernous ceilings and want to make the space more intimate, you can create a dramatic focal point by using flowers and glass ornaments to create the deconstructed chandelier.
Using clusters of hanging glass pieces, this â€˜chandelierâ€™ takes on the feel of an art instillation. The volume of space allows for the repetition of the same items en mass and in this instance the hanging glass becomes the focal piece to the entire event space. Think how the void created by the dancefloor could easily be filled with an exciting element that captures attention; like this deconstructed chandelier, at right.
ATTACK A VOID OF SPACE WITH A DRAMATIC CREATE A SENSE OF PLACE.
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Making a statement with your centerpieces is as easy as thinking about new elements that can be combined with flowers. Unique vases and other containers or sculptural elements can bring instant excitement to the tablescape.
Ice can be used as a statement in ways that are unexpected. An ice sculpture can take on many forms; from walls of ice used as decor, to smaller accents. Thinking outside of the cube so to speak, utilize ice as a centerpiece on guest tables. When combined with blazing calla lilies, at left, these pieces create great impact. Thinking bigger, the ice wall, at right, or ice curtains can be used as a back drop to a bar or in a lounge
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Statement pieces enhance the environment that already exists. By utilizing a collection of candles, the
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natural architecture in the event space, at right, is magnified.
Candles are a simple way to create a statement, it just generally requires a lot
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of them. Think of lining the exterior stairs of the venue with hundreds of votives or great luminaries. This will create a sense of arrival.
Candles are also beautiful at the ceremony. Consider an eclectic assortment of sizes to decorate the altar or even line the aisles. Floating candles work especially well in these
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Statement pieces can also take on a diminutive form and still have big impact. Think of the ways you can augment a menu item to create interest. These items are experienced up close so you can create great amusement with something that seems relatively simple.
For instance, we created a statement piece using a sorbet course, pictured at left. By working with the chef to style the course, we turned the sorbet on edge so to speak. Instead of scooping the sorbet, it was super chilled so that it could be cut into perfect cubes. Each cube was balanced on a bed of frozen deconstructed raspberries. We created a moment of â€˜WOWâ€™ by choosing an oversized plate for the delicate intermezzo.
STATEMENT PIECES CAN TAKE ON A Coppersmith Photography
DIMINUTIVE FORM INCLUDING PETITE MENU COURSES.
A traditional element seen at nearly every wedding in some fashion is the wedding cake. How can you add something extra to make it impactful or different?
Six separated cake tiers created a statement all alone. To amplify the experience, we took advantage of height, carefully placing it under a set of crystal chandeliers. As planned in the overall design, the cake, at right, reached up into the chandelier, making the crystals the crowning cake top. We embellished the entire cake with cascading white orchids.
THE WEDDING CAKE CREATES AN OPPORTUNITY CENTERPIECE OF THE RECEPTION.
TO BE THE
SIGNATURE ELEMENTS There are certain elements that when woven into the design of the wedding will stand out as a signature element. These items will generally define space or create an unexpected opportunity for your guests. Signature elements stretch the boundaries of the â€˜expectedâ€™, and will be the unique piece that will have your guests talking for years to come.
As we develop the design of any wedding, we always think about taking the ordinary and making it extraordinary. Signature elements bring a sense of surprise, wonder or whimsy and can become a central focus of your wedding environment. Signature elements need to draw attention and make an impact, so scale is important!
When creating a unique bar, at left, we wanted to feature a dramatic sculptural element. Accentuating the existing square chandelier and mimicking its dimensions on the ground with a mirrored bar, we were left with the perfect void to create something that would be the centerpiece of the reception. Our idea: to construct an ice tree that stretched to the ceiling. The statement was impressive and added a sparking focus to the center of the reception. From the hand carved limbs of ice, orchids floated down from the ceiling
creating a magical effect.
Signature elements can also add an auditory experience to the event space. When we decided to add an acrylic lined reflecting pool, at right, to the reception space, the sounds of flowing water were an unexpected benefit.
Adding bolsters and accent pillows, we turned the fountain into the centerpiece of a lounge where guests could sit and relax throughout the evening. As the room darkened, the acrylic surround included lighting that brought another element to the overall look. With an ever changing palette of light, the room was transformed throughout the evening. The light reflected not only in the fountain itself, but also illuminating the room with a beautiful wash of subtle color. The effect simply amplified the unique details of the wedding celebration.
UNIQUE SIGNATURE ELEMENTS CAN FOCUS TO THE EVENT SPACE.
Signature elements can also take on a more functional form. When thinking of creating a one-of-a-kind guest experience, we often look to trends that are happening in the world around us. When we discovered the trend at upscale clubs that were taking drinks outside to mix with the winter elements, we saw the perfect opportunity to capitalize on this interactive experience for a winter wedding.
By crafting a custom ice bar and placing it outside the reception on the exterior veranda, guests were excited to put on a coat and grab a glass of Guinness. While indulging in the bar, guests could also enjoy the outdoor cigar lounge. This signature element was so popular that it became necessary to lure guests back
inside to see the first dance.
Ceremony and Reception.... Ice isn’t the only way to amp up the evening. Looking to heat things up, we incorporated the element of surprise with a fire pit. Fire isn’t just for the farm wedding. When added to a winter ice bar, it provides the perfect place to enjoy beverages. Even in the warmer times of the year, it’s great to take the chill out of the evening air, while providing a glowing piece to an outside dance party.
By adding a fire pit to a lounge area, you can maximize your space by taking the party literally outside creating a South Beach inspired afterglow party. The effect of the fire pit, at right, is stunning with the flickering amber flames and the added warmth. You will find it becomes a hub for connection and conversation.
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FIRE ADDS A STRIKING ELEMENT TO THE EVENING, WARMING THE NIGHT AND EXTENDING THE PARTY.
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REAL WEDDING: LIPSTICK The stakes were high with a couple that wanted to host a reception to celebrate their recent destination wedding, requesting a Black Tie reception as well as entertaining games and a decadent feast. The three things that came to mind for us were the glamour of old Hollywood, the world’s most decadent Monte Carlo Casino and, of course, Grace Kelly. A suave and sexy vision for the wedding of Brad + Kathy would include lacquer black, mirrored finishes and the glamour of a luscious red gloss that can only be summed up in one word, ‘Lipstick’.
Authenticity was important to create something that celebrated the couple, but didn’t feel forced or artificial. The evening was to be lavish, yet fun, elegant and sophisticated, yet contemporary and sexy! Hosting the event atop the city’s tallest building, we wanted to take full advantage of the amazing skyline views making them the focus. Sometimes utilizing what’s right in front of you creates some of the most dramatic effects with little or no expense.
The reception was broken into three distinct event spaces. The lounge, at left, the dining room for family and close friends, and the Casino. Carrying out the Casino Royale inspiration in the lounge, we utilized lighting and red Singapore taffeta linens in order to
off set the white leather lounge seating.
Whereas the lounge was designed in reds with pops of black, the dinner was the inverse, designed as black and silver with pops of red.
We began the evening with a grand seated dinner for immediate family and friends at a regal table setting. The light of candles atop ornate white glossy candlestick holders illuminated the space. We selected a damask fabric to create a custom runner that was the width of the table. The runner began at the floor on one end of the seventy-foot-long table and ran all the way to the floor on the other end. The fabric was a black and pewter burnout velvet. This paired beautifully with the undercloth which was a pewter crinkle fabric.
Oversized trumpet vases, at right, were
LONG TABLES PROVIDE INSTANT DRAMA AND PLAY UP THE RECEPTION PLACED ELEMENTS.
placed in a symmetrical arrangement. Atop each trumpet vase sat the stylized floral which featured mounds of red roses cleverly mixed with red carnations.
The centerpiece of the dining table was the four tier wedding cake topped with red roses and beautiful red anemone flowers, at left. The damask pattern was also repeated on the wedding cake, as well as the individually personalized acrylic place card with menu, at right.
Considering the flow of the guests as they found their seats for dinner, we designed the place setting so that the menus were tilted toward the entrance in order for guests to read down the table to find their personalized place card
Golden Valley Golf and Country Club To us, Casino meant more than just game tables. We wanted to create the feel of luxury and give each guest the experience and excitement of being a ‘high roller’. To create this illusion we looked at enhancing the existing ballroom space. First, we installed decadent crystal chandeliers over each of the gaming tables to provide ample light for the players, while allowing us to dim the lights in the rest of the room. Next, we added an acrylic bar with a backlit acrylic wall. The focus of the bar was a large 60” plasma screen that looped photos of the wedding ceremony and honeymoon in order for guests to feel as though they were a part of the
actual wedding day.
Entertainment for the evening wasn’t just going to be games. The couple also wanted a sophisticated dance party.
ENTERTAINMENT CAN TAKE ON FORMS GENERALLY FOR WEDDING
The contemporary nightclub atmosphere included another bar and multiple food stations. Taking our cue from the distinctive circular wooden pattern on the venue ceilings; we envisioned a circular acrylic bar lit in red. In the center of the bar a crystal chandelier hung from floor to ceiling. This created a stunning effect as guests entered the lounge.
Beyond the bar we placed a gloss white dance floor and the stage for the band. We had split the room into thirds making the dance floor the epicenter of the action highlighting the most dramatic views in the city which were seen through the band. Beyond the dance floor we provided soft seating and cabaret tables where guests could watch all the activity. The evening was a celebration centered around the glamour of â€˜Lipstickâ€™.
MAKING THE DANCEFLOOR THE CENTER OF THE
RECEPTION SPACE KEEPS PEOPLE ENERGIZED.
REAL WEDDING: REFLECTION Taking our cue from the serenity of a spa experience, we designed a wedding experience that centered on Zen principles of design with signature Asian inspired elements. Each step of the wedding day was infused with natural and earthy environments. Adaptation of other cultures continues to bring weddings new ideas and borrowed customs to create signature style. Jessica + Thomas loved Asian spices and rustic natural elements, so we envisioned a tranquil evening set with an amazing menu and organic design.
We envisioned a ceremony that would rival the impact of the reception. To do so we started with a reflection of Zen design principles. Within states of active calm, solitude and tranquillity, we find the essence of creative energy. The ceremony needed to evoke this sense of calm and the creation of this new couple. By designing the altar as the signature element, we constructed a chuppah-style canopy from bamboo poles to mark the marriage space. The bamboo poles were tied together with hemp ropes and clusters of golden caprizi shell chandeliers hung from the canopy, at left. Under the canopy, we placed a fountain with bubbling water and tumbled river rock that created a serene space with the sounds of flowing water.
With a color palette of golds, coppers, ivories and smoky browns, the overall concept Coppersmith Photography
was warm and enveloping. The Zen principle Datsuzoku signifies a reprieve from the conventional, exemplified when a well-worn pattern is broken. We conjured this creativity
to take the traditional ceremony layout and make it something truly unique. With the altar as the focal point, we decided that the seating should radiate out from this center as ripples do when a drop of rain hits the waterâ€™s surface. The concentrical lines of the chairs created this stunning in-the-round effect. The Zen aesthetic presents something that both appears sparse and imparts a sense of focus and clarity. Clear acrylic chairs were the perfect choice for the seating arrangement.
Slate colored vinyl graphics of bamboo and Asian butterflies were adhered to a sleek white gloss wall to create a large focal point. These mimicked the whimsical design of the invitation which was done in smoky colors of blues, reds and greens. Bamboo poles sprung from moss topped urns and rustic metal lanterns with glowing candles hung from
CLEAR ACRYLIC CHAIRS RADIATE EPICENTER AS RIPPLES DO IN WATER.
OUT FROM THE
jute ropes, adding a shimmer of light. Japanese styled hand-woven rush grass tatami mats with fabric borders created a striking aisle runner which approached from both sides of the altar allowing the couple to meet in the middle.
The Zen principle Kanso dictates that beauty and utility need not be overstated, overly decorative, or fanciful. The overall effect is clean, fresh and neat. It incorporates naturally occurring patterns and rhythms, which we displayed for the cocktail reception by creating a river of black stones that ran the length of the long cocktail tables. Nestling in orchid blossoms and votive candles throughout the rocks brought more natural elements into the design and added a pop of
white and additional light to the space, at left.
Butler passed hors dâ€™oeuvres of crispy pork dumplings with chili and scallions showcased the color palette of the wedding; golden crispy pork dumplings were accompanied by soy sauce in a small white circular dish all displayed on an onyx oblong serving platter.
As guests moved onto dinner they experienced a lightness of space with clear acrylic tables that made the dinner service and centerpiece look as if they were floating in the room.
Zen design conveys the symmetry of the natural world through clearly asymmetrical constructs. The effect is that the viewer supplies the missing symmetry and participates in the act of creativity.
The styled floral we chose danced along the rectangular tables with orbs of
INTERTWINED FLORAL WEAVES ZEN CENTERED FOCUS.
green and calla lilies stretching through cylinders of fresh bamboo. Clusters of white hydrangea continued our pop of white which was carried over from the cocktail reception.
Each place setting featured a gold lined Ochoko (Sake Cup) along with a slate tile charger, chopsticks, circular black onyx bowls and black plates. The symmetry of the place settings was juxtaposed against the flowing floral centerpieces.
The napkins were folded to represent karate belts and were alternated in brown and mint colors. Together, the design created a harmonious and unique atmosphere for this signature wedding.
THE SYMMETRY OF THE PLACE SETTING Coppersmith Photography
WAS JUXTAPOSED AGAINST THE FLOWING FLORAL CENTERPIECES.
REAL WEDDING: CHANDELIER The wedding of Susan + Stephen evoked an atmosphere that was classic, yet city chic. Self described as ‘foodies’ the culinary experience was a priority. Their love for the engagement of a crafted cocktail, created by a master mixologist gave us just the inspiration in creating their signature wedding.
Wanting to create a diversion from the sit-down dinner the guests would likely expect, we wanted the guests to be wowed by both the décor and the culinary experience. The couple enjoyed dining out, so we decided to bring a restaurant-style culinary experience to their wedding day and we were challenged with the task of finding just the right location. We wanted to customize a menu that would allow guests to try new things, all on their own. Our solution was to buy out a restaurant for the evening. The perfect venue featured two levels and provided us with ample opportunity to augment the restaurant decor with signature elements and statement pieces to enhance the space.
The entrance to the restaurant offered a great sense of arrival so we only needed to enhance it with a statement piece of stylized floral flowing from clear cylinders. We utilized interesting architectural elements like the cement beam, at left, to hold a collection of
classic candlesticks that mimicked the amber glow of the chandeliers.
The upper floor was converted to the cocktail lounge and dance floor, while the lower level was reserved as the dining space. Since the reception was cocktail style, guests could mingle between floors all evening. The open glass staircase allowed for visibility of the lower level from the upper floor, allowing us to take advantage of the two story cluster of chandeliers to create a statement piece with the wedding cake.
The design vision for the lower level was to offer the comfort of a living room environment including silver tufted chesterfield sofas, perimeter booth seating and mirrored cube tables featuring vinyl lettering accents.
CREATE AN ELEMENT OF SURPRISE TO KEEP GUESTS WILL COME NEXT.
We worked with tones of white, silver and black as primary shades, adding in teal and orange to accent and give a pop of trend color. The cocktail area allowed for clear acrylic seating and contemporary tables where we applied custom vinyl graphics with the coupleâ€™s names on the table tops, at left.
The impactful statement of chandeliers echoed the sophisticated style of the couple and it was as if the chandeliers sang to us on the initial venue tour. We incorporated chandeliers throughout the event with a modernized graphic treatment. Even the mixologistâ€™s menu, at right, featured the stylized chandelier graphic that was used for the invitation, on the mirrored bar and on the rugs we
The staircase provided a sneak peek into the dinner reception area below, but did not allow guests to see the main parts of
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As the cocktail reception ended, the guests were welcomed to the lower level. They passed by the four-feet-tall cake which was covered in orchids and extended up into the chandelier. This was one of the statement pieces we were most excited about as every detail had to be meticulously planned, including the exact height of the cake. The last crystal on the chandelier almost touched the cake.
The overall vibe was an experience of culinary taste that told the couple’s story. It gave their guests the opportunity to try something they normally wouldn’t eat like sushi. It was a mix of seating and
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ILLUMINATING THE EVENT SPACE.
standing allowing for easy access to the many different food stations. The menu was eclectic with varied comfort foods like macaroni and cheese lollipops to the more sophisticated beef tenderloin. It was the sushi action stations, however, that became a hub of excitement.
The mixology bar enticed guests with four designer drinks specially designed for the couple, taking into account the favorite flavors they enjoyed while dining out. We enhanced the restaurant’s built in bar with simple white tulips which gave a contrast to the orange and yellow bar back, beckoning guest to say ‘I’ll have another’.
SOMETIMES THE SIMPLEST STATEMENTS CAN MAKE Erica McCauley
A MAJOR IMPACT TO THE OVERALL DESIGN.
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