Fly by Design

A recent client wedding felt like a blur, as the whirlwind of details were pulled together in less than two months.

One of my most stylish brides to date hired me a mere month an a half before her late September wedding date. Luckily, however, it seemed as if we were a match made in heaven from the first day we sat together in our consultation room – chatting and dreaming about a worthy wedding design – to the minute she walked down the aisle, tearing with excited anticipation.

Lucky for me, this bride had done her research. As an interior designer for one of the hottest firms in Chicago, she knew it was important to properly vocalize her wishes for her wedding design. She had scoured countless glossy wedding, fashion and design magazines for inspiration. She had also taken inspiration from her unique and charming venue, The Murphy Auditorium, and from one of her favorite designers, Ralph Lauren, famous for a casual sophistication like no other.

The bride envisioned a wedding that oozed richness, specifically achieved through her chosen color palette of deep purples and blues enhanced with antiqued silver and pewter accents – surrounded by the rich wood-paneled walls of the room. She hoped for a wedding reminiscent of a men’s club circa 1920. She hoped for a wedding that may seem as if it were a vignette designed by Ralph Lauren, himself, for their fantastic Michigan Avenue store.

The ceremony was lit merely by candlelight. A custom aisle runner of rich navy spilled into the pleated curtains erected to mask the bands equipment. The aisle was bordered by a collection of varied glass vases, brimming with crystal clear water and topped with floating disk votive candles – a pathway of illumination leading the bride to her groom – all placed atop a solid border of feathery white rose petals. Creating the dramatic framed focal point for the couple was our vintage wrought-iron geometric arch, laden with rich and unruly foliages including magnolia, cotinus and camellia, bursting with bundles of white local hydrangea and open champagne colored roses, finally finished with the unexpected addition of black grapes and hanging mason jar votive candles.

The reception centerpieces were designed low to the table, allowing the evening to feel like an intimate candlelit dinner party. I considered the whole tablescape when creating the brides reception design. Vintage inspired silver-footed compote bowls overflowed with bountiful creations of Dutch blue hydrangea, purple lisianthus and garden stock, camellia foliage and velvety dusty miller. We chose chairs only found at Tablescapes Rentals that feature a champagne colored finish – a warm accent to the silver tones used on the table. Exquisite solid silver chargers were topped with a folded navy napkin framing the dinner menu and a charming sprig of seasonal privet berries. The elegant shape of the Murano stemware oozed elegance, as the table was lit with an abundance of candlelight.

The cake was simple and elegant. We created a petite hand tied bouquet of rich purple lisianthus and anemones accented with textural privet berries that simply rested atop the highest tier. The stems of this tiny nosegay were bound in navy Swiss double-faced silk ribbons left long to tumble down the tiers, for a graphic and graceful contrast against the classic ivory dressed cake.

Although the planning flew by in a matter of weeks, the details and the design could have fooled anyone, masked as years of careful planning because of the passion and inspiration I felt to create a wedding fit for one of the most stylishly savvy brides I’ve had the pleasure of working with.