by Rashana Anderson
Founder & Managing Director, THE BRIDAL PARTY
I'm working with a Washington, D.C. couple planning an early-September wedding who've chosen to incorporate island flair and culture into the design of their event. My staff and I have been having so much fun brainstorming and compiling ideas, thus this couple has become our Isle to Aisle bride and groom. So far, we're having visions of bright pink, purple and orange hues ... steel drummers and African percussionists ... frozen specialty drinks & rum punch ... hanging paper lanterns ... crackling fire pits encircled by plush pillows ... walls drenched in color ... message-in-a-bottle escort cards ... hints of black for "POP." Oh the possibilities!
Here's my first inspiration board for this couple's nuptials.
One of THE BRIDAL PARTY's biggest supporters and helpers recently married the love of her life and we are so happy for them both. The bride, Danielle, has been in our corner since 2007 and remains a huge fan of all that we do. Not only has she contributed to many of our efforts in planning/designing outstanding weddings and events, she effortlessly brought an unmatched elegance to her own wedding.
The ceremony was held at Saint Edward the Confessor Church in New Fairfield, Connecticut and the reception took place at the Portuguese Cultural Center in Danbury. Local specialties from Connecticut and Saratoga, New York (where the bride and groom are originally from, respectively) were lovingly incorporated like Saratoga Sparkling Water in all the hotel rooms and Q Products BBQ sauce (an ode to the bride's best friend, who is the founder). And you'll notice from the photographs the wedding was a beautiful success and every guests had a ball! Favors were bottles of wine from Altamont Vineyards & Winery in Altamont, New York (which one of the groomsmen owns). Everything was perfectly classy, tasteful and gorgeous ... especially my favorite element, the cake (created by Sweet Rewards)!
We are proud to share a few of the best moments of Danielle and Thomas' wedding day below, thanks to Cristiana Paula Photography:
Truvy: What are your colors, Shelby?
Shelby: My colors are "blush" and "bashful."
M'Lynn: Her colors are "pink" and pink."
Shelby: My colors are "blush" and "bashful" Mama!
M'Lynn: How pretentious is this weddin' gonna get, I ask you?
The red carpet of the 68th Annual Golden Globe Awards was quite colorful this year, but it seems PINK reigned supreme. So, as the character Shelby did from the play/movie "Steel Magnolias," could brides consider fleeting from traditional white in a big way this year?
Check out some of the celebs who blushed along the red carpet:
My wedding is scheduled for Summer and everything will take place outdoors underneath a tent. At first I thought planning an outdoor wedding under a tent instead of an indoor wedding at a reception hall would be easier ... but I found out rather quickly, that isn't the case. Nevertheless, I'm dedicated to having everything outdoors and have begun the process of securing the tent. We're inviting 175 guests for a sit-down dinner and I've been told I'll need a 30X60 tent. Honestly, this seems waaaay too big and the 30X30 is closer to my budget. Am I being duped or will I really need a tent of a larger size?
- Tent Chic Bride
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Dear Tent Chic Bride,
This is an excellent question! First, you're right in that planning an outdoor event under a tent instead of an indoor banquet hall affair is not necessarily easier. After all, for an outdoor/tented event, you must provide and account for EVERYTHING ... every chair, every fork, every napkin, and of course the tented apparatus itself. We always have so much fun planning our tented events, like the all-white birthday extravaganza and the 19th century barn rustic wedding, but it definitely takes lots of organization, know-how and a mastering of logistics. All of which leads me to answering your primary question, yes, you will need a 30x60 tent. Here's the breakdown we at THE BRIDAL PARTY use without fail:
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So you've already planned every detail, but on that special day you'd simply like it all to run smoothly without worrying about a thing...
Style Me Pretty has been inspiring brides and wedding planners for years and remains one of the most elite blogs to date. Honestly, this forum definitely helped me get my creative juices flowing when building the foundation for After YES, Before I Do and Everything in Between. And just when we all thought it couldn't get any better ... they've unveiled a NEW digital magazine!
Run, don't walk, over to Style Me Pretty and check out '20 of the most swoon-worthy, gush-able, ah-inducing, style-savvy weddings of the year… all together in one pretty package.'
It's a new year, time for innovative ideas, time to leave a few things behind. And in the case of weddings and events, this also rings true. For example in 2010, trying too hard and missing the mark when producing green/eco-friendly events got a little "old" ... cupcakes-cupcakes-cupcakes and overly dramatic desert tables, oh my, they have truly run their course ... mermaid-style gowns, glamorous and sexy but hey la hey la - the ballgown's back!
So what are the bridal trends for 2011?
TheKnot.com released their predictions for the top 11 wedding trends for 2011 Tuesday! Think you'll incorporate any of these fresh ideas into your wedding/event?
1. Prohibition-Era Elegance: So long, Mad Men—the most stylish new show is Boardwalk Empire and brides are noticing. From dusty nudes and lace dresses for the ladies to wing-tip shoes for the men, couples are falling in love with the dapper fashion of the 1920s. And it wouldn’t feel like Prohibition without alcohol. To reinterpret the boozy nights of the Roaring ’20s, couples are serving up “moonshine” and Prohibition “bathtub gin” in their very own speakeasy bar, all while guests dance the night away—to jazz, naturally.
2. The Redefined Princess: With a royal wedding around the corner, you can bet Kate Middleton’s going to alter what princess style is all about. Put away the ball-gown skirt because the new princess silhouette will be body-skimming but with a bold train. Add statement-making headwear like tasteful tiaras (seriously!) and cathedral-length veils. And you can count on sophisticated sequins and beading showing up on everything from the wedding dress to the floral arrangements and the wedding cake.- - - - - - - - - -
3. Sultry Ballerina Style: From feathered headpieces and shredded fabrics to airy plumes and pale pinks paired with black, the look of the season is all about Black Swan, right down to an ambiance where everything happens after 8 p.m. One idea we love? Romantic ceremonies by candlelight.
4. Ivy League Chic: From Fair Isle sweaters to Vineyard Vines ties and Tommy Hilfiger blazers, preppy chic is back in a big way, and weddings aren’t immune. Brides will be channeling their inner Blair Waldorf from Gossip Girl or Ali MacGraw from Love Story and incorporating Ivy League-chic details like plaids and stripes for the perfect remix of retro, preppy sensibility.
5. Exotic Indian Inspiration: From Katy Perry’s Indian wedding and Eat, Pray, Love to Nicole Richie’s exotic elephant as a wedding greeter, India will definitely be the “it” country for wedding inspiration. Think vibrant color palettes like purples, reds and golds, lavish décor elements such as beading and rich drapery, and exotic, spicy dishes.
6. Wedding Man Caves: Blackjack tables, brandy bars, PlayStations and stogies. The man cave has officially moved from the home to the wedding, so don’t be surprised if you see all the male wedding guests in the new “groom’s corner” at the reception.
7. Prewedding PJ Parties: This isn’t Bachelorette Party, Part Two. Before the big day, brides will be planning a night of pampering and bonding via JHS-style slumber parties, complete with matching pj’s of course.
8. Food Truck Fun: Waffles, tacos and dumplings, oh my! People’s hunger for gourmet food trucks has seeped into weddings, and brides will be embracing it wholeheartedly by requesting makeshift sidewalk carts during the cocktail hour or food trucks for the wedding after-party.
9. Haute Desserts: Blame it on the popularity of Top Chef: Just Desserts, Amazing Cakes and Cake Boss, but desserts and wedding cakes will be taking center stage with gourmet flavor and haute style. Chocolate tart with a dash of sea salt, anyone?
10. Video Guest Books: Building on the popularity of “wedding photo booths”, wedding guests can expect confessional-style video booths and even iPads dressed up as guest books as the newest way to “write” well wishes to the happy couple. Bonus? Postwedding, couples can easily share their guest book online via YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, Flickr or Vimeo.
11. Surprise Honeymoons: Couples will be taking a cue from Chelsea Clinton’s wedding and have the groom plan a surprise honeymoon.
We shared snapshots of our Vintage Romance wedding a few months ago, but professional photos became available just last night!
The ceremony was held at Queen of Peace Church in North Arlington and the reception commenced at the One and Only Westmount Country Club in West Patterson. The event took place on a brisk yet beautiful late-October day and went off without a hitch! Guests absorbed every detail and the simple opulence that seemed to lurk around every corner. From the bagpiper that signaled the bride's entrance to the candlelit ambiance perfectly complemented by bold Autumn hues of eggplant and pistachio to the indoor/outdoor multi-cuisine reception ... to say it was a night to remember is an understatement.
Lush floral centerpieces sat atop antique glass pedestals. A delicate cymbidium orchid welcomed each guest to his/her seat. The reception ballroom walls were heavily drenched in purple light and a live swing band jammed the night away. All expectations were truly exceeded ... and more importantly, this group of 250 guests had FUN!
It was such a pleasure working with Natasha and Patrick, which is why we're very happy to be able to share a few of the best moments of their wedding day below, thanks to Milton Gil Photographers.