Saturday, August 28, 2010

Katie and James: Beautiful Pennsylvania Wedding

I worked with Katie and James for more than a year on every detail of their amazing wedding in Katie's hometown of Scranton, Pennsylvania (which is my hometown too!). This is not my first Scranton-area event so I am getting a little reputation back home for coming in and shaking things up a bit. Depending on who you ask, that may be a good thing or a bad thing...

My goal with the decor was to create a "wow factor" while remaining cognizant of the slightly more tailored sensibility of my clients and their guests. Katie picked this fabulous color palette of plum, raspberry and pewter from some paint chip strips I stole from the paint department at Home Depot (shhh!) and so that there would be a little something for everyone, I created three different tabletop looks on both square and rectangular tables. I just loved using these custom upholstered lampshades atop tall, shapely vases instead of a room full of flowers (non-floral decor at its best!) and to keep costs in check, I used tap lights (yes, from the info-mercials) to illuminate inside the shades. Peonies were in full bloom for this June wedding, but to give the lamps a lift, a pave'd box of hot pink carnations did the trick.

There were dozens of fun details at this Scranton Cultural Center wedding from the illuminated escort table to the monogrammed chair caps and the sweet drink straws to the surprise zeppole station at the exit. Here's just a peek at some of my favorite accents...

All photos by Rob Lettieri

It was a thrill to be part of a wedding day with so much life and exuberance. This room was exploding with energy, but also with love and warmth. Katie and James' wedding was a true collaboration with the bride, the groom and both families and it was amazing to see and feel how the end result was a reflection of all of them and their amazing connection to one another.

A special thanks goes out to Dorian and Eloise Butovich of Central Park Flowers in Olyphant, PA who were crucial to the production of this event and who helped make it a success.


Sunday, August 1, 2010

Non-floral decor

Hello, again! Yes, I am still alive and well despite my complete disappearance from the blogosphere. So sorry... hope you missed me just a little.

So, non-floral decor. What on earth does that mean and why, oh, why would a designer who focuses much of her work on weddings always be telling people it is her specialty? Well, because if I have said it once I have said it a thousand times: people put too much pressure on their flowers to create their decor! If you rely solely on flowers, your only option to make your decor more impactful is to keep making your flowers bigger and bigger and bigger. Not only does that look often become heavy and overwhelming, but it becomes expensive. And I mean EX-PEN-SIVE.

Non-floral decor refers to all of the elements that contribute to the overall design that are not flowers. This includes, but is not limited to, linens, tableware, lighting, candles, printed materials - even food. All of these items, if thought through properly, can contribute to the overall impression of your decor. Some of these things are even event necessities - so if you have to have them, why not make them work a little harder and really change the aesthetics of your celebration?

Please don't misunderstand me. I love flowers and I think they are gorgeous. I also think that EVERY social event should have at least one fresh floral element as this is what tells your guests that the decor atmosphere was made fresh for your celebration. I just don't think flowers are the end-all-and-be-all of decoration.

I came across this photo on Apartment Therapy blog and it just took my breath away. It is elegant, dramatic, unique and just simply gorgeous. It could be a table for a wedding, a new year's eve dinner, a glamorous birthday party - just about anything. Now, take a close look at the flowers. Yes, they are there - single white roses propped in small glass vases - but they are just 1% of this look. It is a big look, but with the smallest amount of fresh flowers possible. The "wow" of this is certainly the chandeliers, but what I love most is how every element on the table contributes to the overall aesthetic. Notice how the glassware mimics the shapes of the light fixtures and how the varying candleholders and candles add movement to the landscape. If you have to have glasses (which of course you do!) why not make them do double duty and contribute to your decor? That is the essence of non-floral decor - making every element share the work-load of creating gorgeousness.