The Truth behind Floral Décor: Arches

I had the privilege of assisting on a truly beautiful wedding this past weekend. You would have loved it: outdoors at a wonderful botanical garden on the grounds of the Cheek mansion. The florals were bright, happy, perfect for a summer day and quite extensive. There in lies the bugaboo.

Saturday in lovely NashVegas was 92 degrees and possessed of all the humidity for which the south is famous. Now the wedding didn’t start until 7:00 and by that time the temperature had improved a bit and the breezes had picked up, but at 3:30 it was a bear.

The arch you see above had to be done completely on site. It began with a ladder, a green garland and 5 buckets of flowers. Two of us spent 2 hours in the afternoon sun climbing and cutting and placing and misting to achieve the results you see. I am not telling you this to complain, I am telling you this so that you are aware of what goes on behind the scenes of your big day. When we stood back and looked at our work we were as in love with it as I hope you are. It was most definitely worth the effort; but wow, was it ever hot!

The floral décor was by Branching Out Event Florists. The wedding was held at Cheekwood. If you would like to see larger images of the images above, visit my Flickr Photostream.

Treats for Your House Party

Come on. You all know how much I like swag. Nothing beats a fun creative swag bag as a way to remember an event, double score when the bag is a cool as the swag in it.

At last weeks conference in Celebration, Fl, Rebecca pulled in a favor from a friend from the neighborhood to put together the fabulous swag bags for the guests. WOW. Cindy Folak has created Tulla Belles as a one stop destination for posh presents and trendy swag.

Tulla Belles has some of the most beautiful bags from the b.happybags line. On top of that they will source your swag and fill your bags for you. One less thing you have to think about amid your busy pre-wedding schedule.

The bags we received were the Victoria Bag shown above with the addition of cute little monogrammed luggage tags. Lovely.

As you start to think about how to tell the girls in your house party how truly wonderful they are, pay a visit to Tulla Belles for some equally wonderful swag bags to put it all in. While you are there, check out the too cool hostess aprons Cindy has. Ooooo, I covet them.

Flower Friday: Preston Bailey and Marcy Blum

I had the chance recently to be part of an Inside the Designers Studio with none other than Preston Bailey and Marcy Blum. Instead of doing their standard conference presentation, Rebecca Grinnals had set up a more intimate discussion with Bailey and his oft times partner Marcy Blum.

What a treat. Together they shared with the elite group of wedding professionals gathered their take on weddings today and a bit of the philosophy that has led them to be trendsetters.

The one thing that really sets them apart is that each event they do is an individual. So many décor designers today seem to rehash the same successful event over and over. Not these two. When asked if he ever reused design elements, Bailey said there may be a tiny bit of a recurring theme over the course of a season, but only because it is a trend. At the end of each season he guts his storage and starts over anew.

What you should take away from this is a way to think as you begin to choose your wedding planning and décor professionals. If you go through their portfolio and there are only 2 or 3 designs that keep getting repeated over and over in various colors, they aren’t really designers, just technicians. Your wedding should be unique to you, your location and the level of formality. If you are interviewing someone and they just keep showing you pictures of past work and never pull out a sketch book, move on.

Be sure to pick up Preston’s new book, Inspirations. It is jam packed with yummy event photos and, hallelujah, no two look alike.

While you’re at it, be sure to check out Marcy Blum’s entertaining column on The Huffington Post. By entertaining I mean both that it is about entertaining and that in itself is wildly entertaining. Ms. Blum is a character of the first order and I thoroughly enjoyed every minute she spoke. To hear her and Preston Bailey bounce thoughts and ideas back and forth off each other tells me that anything they design and plan together is going to be amazing.

Get Married

I just got back from a fabulous conference in Florida with some of the top trend setters in the industry. Over the next few days I want to go indepth on some of the people and products I ran across. So let’s get started.

I rode in from the airport with the darling Stacie Francombe, CEO of Get Married. Stacie and I have met on other occasions but this trip gave us a chance to really connect. If you aren’t familiar with GetMarried.com you should be. What a great site.

Get Married is supported on the air waves with a daily TV show on Lifetime at 7:30 AM, EDT. TIVO it or better yet just watch it on line. I could spent hours watching the archived goodie on GM.

My favorite things on the site are the video quick tips. I could literally spend hours. The videos are beautifully done and not just fluff. The information is cutting edge and detailed. Click on the Planning tab and select Expert Advice from the drop down. Get comfortable, you will want to stay for a while. The Quick Tips are as billed, quick; there are just so many great ones that you will keep on watching. Yes, sadly I have found one more habit to consume my time. At least this is a good one.

Tomorrow for Flower Friday I’ll share what the amazing Preston Bailey had to say.

Flower Friday: The Carnation

Some times the simplest things can have the biggest impact. Take for instance the humble carnation. We have all seen the old fashion, boring flower arrangement with a few carnations and a bunch of green filler or even worse the single green carnation in the bud vase tied with paper ribbon. I think we can all agree on Yuck! That is where these easy to use, sturdy and inexpensive flowers got their bad rep.

Look at what happens when you use them in mass! Think pave in a single color on an interesting shaped floral foam base. That humble little flower becomes transformed into something very modern and sculptural.

Lightly scented and wildly ruffled; they add a fresh alternative to the over used rose. So when your floral designer mentions the word carnation, do not run for the hills, hear them out. You might just be surprised.

$1000 Tigerlilly Jewelry Giveaway


WooHoo! My favorite jewelry designer, Mandy Greenan is giving away $1000 of her fabulous bridal jewelry to one lucky bride.

Tigerlilly is looking for its Bride of the Season for summer. Not only will the winner receive a gift certificate for Mandy’s beautiful bridal and bridesmaid jewelry and hair accessories; she will be featured on the Tigerlilly website complete with pictures and details about her wedding. How great is that.

To enter, brides should visit www.tigerlillyjewelry.com/seasons.html and tell Tigerlilly a little bit about themselves, what designs they would choose if they won, and why they are Tigerlilly’s Bride of the Season. The winner will be announced on Monday, June 2.

If you are not familiar with Tigerlilly, they are a couture jewelry design house that has been featured every where from the Knot to Modern Bride to Lifetime TV to Mercedes Benz Fashion Week at Bryant Park. Mandy’s unique designs set her apart in the bridal industry. These are most definitely NOT your mama’s tiaras.

Since I am obviously not eligible, I certainly hope one of you win it. I just know you will love her designs as much as I do.

Read more here and here.

Rose Petal Monogram

If you follow the Dish then you know I have had my share of stories about rose petals; good, bad and hysterically funny. Whether it’s keeping my head down while the planner and the church lady argued over their very existence or traipsing through the pouring rain and lightning to collect them off the grass, they seem to be ever present. For some reason when I stage with my friend Vicki I always end up on rose petal detail.

The newest trend I have seen emerging is the rose petal monogram. We always place it at the end of the aisle right in front of where the couple stands to take their vows. With so many couples incorporating a monogram in their décor this is the perfect way to carry the theme into the ceremony site. Make sure it is allowed by your church, temple or synagogue first; see aforementioned church lady; then just go for it. Provide your floral décor team with a copy of your monogram and you should be good to go.

If you are going to DIY this, lay out your monogram in sidewalk chalk (concrete or stone), ribbon (carpet) or corsage pins (grass) first then just start adding petals until your design suits you.

The above monogram was done by Branching Out Event Florists at Gaylord Opryland Hotel.

Wedded Bits

Laura over at Brides.com just tipped me off to an online survey they are running about the central question in the Sex and the City movie: Will Carrie and Big tie the knot and is she ready for marriage? It seems that the brides-to-be that were polled think that they will indeed do the deed. If not, they want our favorite sex writer to skip back to that darling little Aidan. (my personal fav, but that is a long story) Vote and check out the rest of the details for yourself at the Brides.com blog, Wedded Bits.

If you haven’t subscribed to Wedded Bits yet you really need to check it out. It’s a wonderfully newsy site with lots of celeb updates and style. It struck me as sort of People meets InStyle with Brides pulling it all together. Pretty fun concept and a new must read for me. With the power of Conde Nast behind it, they are able to get interviews and other inside dish that is beyond we mere mortals.

Thanks for the heads up Laura.