For couples planning a ballroom wedding, the goal is often to transform the room into a warm, elegant space with timeless wedding details. To inspire those in the midst of planning an opulent celebration in such a venue, wedding planner and designer Lorenda Howell of Lorenda Howell Events created a beautiful "faux wedding" styled shoot to display a gorgeous ceremony, two different bridal looks, and a stunning reception table design – all with elegant, modern details – at a newly renovated hotel in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

"One of my goals when planning and designing this faux wedding was to ensure it could be converted to a real wedding," explains Lorenda Howell, who made sure to go through all of the processes and hiccups that a real bride might encounter. For example, shipping delays and issues with the products received made it difficult to add the lovely "must have" gold corners to the acrylic stationery. "I recall someone suggesting to just stage it for the shoot, and I said no because if a future bride asks if we can recreate this for her wedding, I need to be able to do so," confirms Lorenda. 

She assembled a team of wedding professionals to create the "modern, opulent, and timeless" look she envisioned for both the ceremony and reception, as well as the striking aforementioned acrylic stationery with gilt accents, sparkling bridal jewelry and glamorous gowns, an elevated tablescape, a towering modern wedding cake, and of course, the lush floral arrangements throughout the décor.

"One of my goals when planning and designing this faux wedding was to ensure it could be converted to a real wedding."

The ballroom wedding décor showcased neutral florals, modern accents, and bold details to create an aesthetic style ideal for nuptials in any season, but especially fitting for the cooler months in fall and winter. "The style and overall aesthetic was so on point for this time of year... [for couples to] see what it would look like to incorporate some of those cozier feels while still staying opulent and elegant," Lorenda describes. 

The ceremony décor featured gold-and-white wedding chairs draped with romantic coverings that faced three tall hedge walls atop mirrored gold bases – the middle piece was accented with ivory blooms in the shape of an arch, while the two on either side displayed modern gilt bookcases topped with votive candles and creamy florals. Tall trees featuring branches adorned with crisp white blossoms flanked the setting of the vow exchange, and the tree design was reintroduced in the center of a large square reception table decorated with elegant linens, modern place settings, and warm candlelight interspersed with fresh greenery and vanilla-toned florals.

Models wearing glistening jewelry and on-trend wedding dresses ideal for both modern and timeless brides helped to create a complete look for the inspirational ballroom wedding. "I cared very much about being diverse and making an effort to showcase African-American models. I wanted to exude #BlackGirlMagic and #BlackExcellence," adds Lorenda of the two beautiful models who helped bring her vision to life. Take a look at both the photos and video capturing the timeless wedding shoot in the carousel above, as well as below: