Expert wedding consultant Linda Howard shares her advice for creating a fairy-tale wedding event.
Couples select their wedding sites based on a variety of factors, and the venue that best fits their needs may not necessarily reflect their wedding style. A kosher kitchen, an unusually large guest capacity, or even the sentimental value of a particular locale may make it a must-have, regardless of its design or décor conflicts. Fortunately, there are a host of options available for temporarily but completely transforming a wedding site, and with the proper team backing your dream, the sky, is quite literally, the limit.
Assuming you have the freedom to temporarily redesign a chosen space to your liking (restrictions should be inquired about in advance), you can begin working with your consultant to create your vision. Successfully communicating any ideas you’ve already formed about the desired style or theme for the event is extremely important, as is understanding the ideas put forth by your consultant. In fact, once I’m familiar with the tastes and personalities of a client, I’ll begin sketching the décor concepts so the couple can clearly envision my ideas. Once the foundation had been laid, a team of professionals that are a match for your tastes and personalities, as well as capable of creating your unique vision, can be assembled.
Although a consultant will visualize and invent the design aspects of a transformation, it takes a range of professionals to implement the physical aspects of the project. The following specialists are those that compose the core of a design team:
Floral Designer. A gifted florist who can appreciate – as well as execute – the concepts within your desired design is a vital member of the team. They are responsible not only for supplying, delivering, and arranging all of the floral elements of a wedding, but also the ceremony structure, be it a chuppah, arch, or stage. Vessels that showcase flowers can run the gamut from chandeliers to banisters, and floral arrangements can range from tables paved in blossoms to towering sculptures of blooms.
Design Firm. A design firm will help create the requested atmosphere of an event through the use of furniture, drapery, and other physical components. I’ve commissioned everything from an entire suite of custom mirror-topped cocktail tables interspersed with faux gems to an intricate system of suspended crystals that spanned the entire ceiling of a hotel ballroom. The expert design companies with which I’ve worked have been able to bring even my most ambitious ideas and requests to fruition, and work in glass, wood, fabric, and more.
Lighting Designer. In addition to evoking a certain ambiance and highlighting areas of interest, intelligent lighting can change the look of an event throughout the different phases of the evening. I once requested that a designer use various colors to highlight a custom-made water wall (made by a design firm) to employ as a backdrop to the stage at a reception. Other creative options include gobo lighting on the dance floor or even along the walls of the space to create a temporary decorative pattern or border.
These types of experts aren’t merely vendors, but artists, and their services are key to completing a full transformation.
From commissioning a bar carved entirely of ice to designing custom light fixtures to be used for the day, your consultant may be brimming with creative ideas. Being aware of your design options and the businesses and artists available to implement them can help turn the space you selected into the realm of your dreams.
Opening photograph by Embrace Life Photography