Entries in couture weddings (5)


old world library wedding

when allison and james, two recent Harvard Law School graduates, approached me about designing their wedding, they told me they wanted to showcase their passion for academia and literature while still keeping their wedding simple and approachable . . . they wanted it to be lovely but not pretentious. i had so much fun bringing their style and passion to life, and loved the structural items and textures we combined to produce this wedding. old brick walls, antique books stacked high, feather quill pens posted in ink wells, vintage sheet music, dripping candles, abundant flowers, shoots of green ivy and long rectangular banquet tables combine to create an old world library feel that was reminiscent of their studies at Harvard. 

allison was such a remarkable bride; beautiful, calm collected, sweet, gracious, incredibly smart and well spoken, yet so warm hearted and focused on showing other people love.  i was blessed to know her and to be part of their day.

enjoy these images from gabriel boone photography 

special thanks to my good friend michelle engvall with married and more with michelle for her amazing coordination skills and bringing me on board for this wedding.
















a few months back  canlis, seattle's premier fine dining restaurant, called me and asked if i would be interested in partnering with them on a photo shoot to showcase the possibilities for private dining in the penthouse of their establishment.

having dined in their restaurant enjoying the chic yet welcoming environment comprised of expansive views, exceptional service, incredible food and their famous ticket-less valet, i was quite excited to partner with an establishment with a similar philosophy as mine: combining a dedication to fine details and a passion for people.

the retro-glam look of the photo shoot was inspired by the mid century architecture that defines canlis. the restaurant combines modern tones of greys, blacks and neutrals with original wood accents from 1950. i wanted to create the tablescape to feel like a natural extension of canlis, so i used black, neutrals, a touch of  retro  brown reminiscent of the the restaurant's original era, and then accented everything with a little bit of bling.

i custom made the linens, and played with layers of polka dots, a textured cheesecloth to add a northwest flare, zebra prints and silks and then crowned the table with crystal candlesticks, rhinestone accents and single bloom arrangements of peonies. 

other details:

lynne baron lent me the unique mid-century-modern chandelier and much of the crystal, as well as her eye for detail and helping hand as we put the table together at the shoot.  so great to work with her again!

dolce design constructed all of the stationery products

abc rentals provided the unique lucite chairs

luly yang designed the dress

tyler sholdt crafted all of the jewelry you will see

green light event design lit up the room with up-lighting and pin spots on the arrangements.

michele waite photographed the shoot

special thanks to Erik Holgate, my technical guy, for all his hard work in making everything happen.

if you are looking for a place to host your next private party, rehearsal dinner or small wedding reception, give give canlis a consideration.  their unparallel devotion to the smallest details will make your fine dining experience or special event unlike anything you have ever experienced. 



jenny and mac

along with her mother, jenny and i worked for about 14 months planning and designing this wedding. we combined jenny's eclectic style and  love for handmade objects and funky details with her mother's flair for elegance, romance and beauty.  because combining styles can sometimes be a tricky process, i was thrilled when both women loved how the wedding turned out. seeing both mother and daughter beaming throughout the entire evening was the perfect way to end the year of planning. it really was such a perfect day.

i hope you enjoy these details, photographed by michele. 



bouquets were formed from south american garden roses, locally grown garden roses, traditional roses, hypericum berries, scabiosa pods, lucadendron and clematis vines. 

as not to obstruct the amazing view of the san juan islands, we used a non traditional clear span tent for the reception. grey linens were draped over each table to form a solid foundation to build the color palette on top of. 


to add interest, we created a variety of centerpieces in different kinds of urns and vases.  we collected pink, peach and grey glass votive holders and vases for this wedding as well. the reception flowers echoed the brides bouquet. once again, dolce design created all of the stationery items. the lantern chandelier was created from anthropologie lanterns. we custom made the cake table cloth with grey tulle and grey and peach handmade flowers. although we made all of the gum paste flowers, the cake itself was created by the talented haggen artist, karen.

my crew of young guys that work with me wanted to surprise jenny, so late in the evening they snuck down the side of the cliff and created a fire works display. the bride and her guests all loved watching the sky light up.  (nice job erik, tyson and andrew!) 

jenny and mac-  jenny, I have never changed color palettes with a client as many times as we did, but I have also never laughed as much as i did with you.  thank you for making planning your wedding so much fun. . . we really could write a book about all of our experiences!  thank you also for being such a bright, playful, kind-kindhearted woman who brings joy into every situation and genuinely loves people. mac, you are  a gentle, calm, unwavering and solid support for jenny. the two of you are so good together, and your interaction with each other shows that your marriage will be one filled with much laughter, friendship, love and stead fast devotion. thank you for letting me be part of your lives over the past year. your wedding is one i will always remember fondly.



first glimpse

blogging is addicting. it is also incredibly time consuming.  i have to laugh at myself now for my impatience as i so often eagerly await other bloggers new entries, wondering "why in the world is it taking so long to throw up a few pictures!?" 

so, although i would love to sit here and keep posting more of my recent weddings, my hands are quite full this week in the studio preparing for my next wedding.  i have favor boxes to tie, arrangements to prep, vases and lanterns to pack, fabric to iron, a wedding dress to pick up and more shopping to do. tomorrow i have peonies arriving from holland, garden roses from south america, orchids from hawaii, gardenias from california  and magnolia leaves from south carolina.

even though i have to set the blog addiction aside and continue the preparations for the wedding this weekend, i wanted to leave you with the first glimpse of the next wedding i will be posting.  

i love this image michele  captured that displays our work. the lantern chandelier, which took over eight hours to create, hung above a cake that was adorned with hundreds of sugar paste flowers i formed and painted just days before the wedding. the cake was set on top of a custom couture linen that was fashioned from countless amounts of hand made fabric flowers.

it was an incredible wedding with countless details i am eager to share. here is your first glimpse to enjoy.


classic goth makeover, part 1

although i love producing events that give me a challenge, i wasn't quite sure what to think when ben and china picked the chapel bar as the venue for their wedding. don't get me wrong, chapel bar itself is an amazing building.  the tall ceilings, dark ambience, old world interior created the perfect ambience for the 19th century classic goth look my clients were dreaming about.  they wanted a space that was untraditional, a little funky and would surprise people when they received their invitation.  chapel bar, sitting majestically on seattle's capitol hill with her grand pillars and a dramatic staircase entrance,  met all of their criteria, so it seemed like the best option for the wedding.

however, there were some obstacles to overcome. the bar itself could not appropriately hold the number of guests that were invited for a sit down ceremony and reception.  if we were to use this venue, we were going to have to use the outside veranda to hold these portions of the wedding. the building that houses the chapel bar, had once been a funeral home.  the veranda was where the hearse used to park to receive the coffins.

the challenge: turning the veranda which was basically a  dark covered garage into an elegant space to host both the ceremony and reception.

these pictures below (poorly photographed with my blackberry) will give you a deep appreciation for my next posting which will show the makeover, as we turned chapel bar's portico into the classic goth wedding my clients dreamed about.