Ro + Rob got hitched. And it was pretty dang magical.

head table lights I am so grateful for the space I am in right now. I’m still pinching myself that 6 days ago Ro let me coordinate her insanely beautiful wedding. Never have I learned so much in 24 hours, nor felt like time stood still like I did this past weekend. It’s taken me 5 days to be even able to write about it. It was that magical. When I took a second and looked back at my work, in the brief moments where guests were filing out of the ceremony into the cocktail hour, I couldn’t believe this was my life. I was standing on the river bank overlooking a setting sun, its warmth still on my skin, and goose bumps traveled up my spine. Saturday was an incredible amount of work. I’m still sore from lugging boxes and running nonstop for 12 hours. But as I had that surreal moment, you know the one- where you feel like you’re looking down on yourself, you’re in the moment, but not quite- I felt for the first time in a long time that I was just right where I needed to be. I had so much fun helping to curate and design this wedding. The food was delicious. The flowers were beautiful. The DJ and Pastor felt like my besties by the end of the night. But most importantly, two of the most generous hearted people joined two families and created one of their own. Sri Lanka and Germany collided on the banks of the Mississippi on a warm April night, under a sparkling clear tent with the stars shining through. Seriously, it was like straight out of a fairytale. Ro and Rob were married at the National Ornamental Metal Museum, just south of downtown Memphis. The museum sits on what once was a Navy hospital built during the Civil War, so the grounds are old and the buildings are stoic. The theme was “vintage travel” because this couple has been everywhere and traveling the world is important to them in their new adventure of marriage. We kept the decorations simple, vintage, and reclaimed and up-cycled as much as we could to respect our resources and let the Metal Museum’s grounds and the river speak for themselves.

We used vintage, repurposed props where could. These globes were rented from PropCellar Memphis.

We used vintage, repurposed props where we could. These globes were rented from PropCellar Memphis.

We used nontraditional forms of a guest book. Guests signed their name on the vintage globe I found at an antique fair, and also stamped their fingerprint on a "family" tree that Rob's mother painted.

We used nontraditional forms of a guest book setup on a farmhouse table at the entrance. Guests signed their name on the vintage globe I found at an antique fair, and also stamped their fingerprint on a “family” tree that Rob’s mother painted.

We found this old mailbox at Goodwill. I painted it with chalkboard paint and used it to collect love notes for the couple and cards.

We found this old mailbox at Goodwill. I painted it with chalkboard paint and used it to collect love notes for the couple and cards.

Ro + Rob's ceremony took place in the gazebo, right outside the tent.

Ro + Rob’s ceremony took place in the gazebo, right outside the tent.

I kept the flowers simple, arranging 30 bunches of babies breath in over 100 up-cycled bottles we collected for months from friends and family.

I kept the flowers simple, arranging 30 bunches of babies breath in over 100 up-cycled bottles we collected for months from friends and family.

The Mississippi River could not have looked more majestic if it tried.

The Mississippi River could not have looked more majestic if it tried.

Ro made every. single. candle at her wedding. Her dedication to the reusable ingredients was amazing. We found vintage teacups and champagne flutes at Goodwill, which she filled with wax and we lit the reception with.

Ro made every. single. candle at her wedding. Her dedication to the reusable ingredients was amazing. We found vintage teacups and champagne flutes at Goodwill, which she filled with wax and we lit the reception with.

Each table had its own country code which guests had to match with their own personal tags they received upon sign in to find their tables. The countries were all places the couple has visited.

Each table had its own country code which guests had to match with their own personal tags they received upon sign in to find their tables. The countries were all places the couple has visited.

The head table was a rented farmhouse table, kept simple with bunches of white flowers and candles.

The head table was a rented farmhouse table, kept simple with bunches of white flowers and candles. I could not have pulled off this wedding without the help of Rob’s groomsmen, friends, family, and my rockstar best friend, Ryan Hart (seen here in seersucker lighting candles).

The bridal bouquet. Thank you, Holiday Flowers!

The bridal bouquet. Thank you, Holiday Flowers!

 

The cocktail hour took place adjacent to the ceremony, next to a fountain and rose garden.

The cocktail hour took place adjacent to the ceremony, next to a fountain and rose garden.

Right now the bride and groom are jet setting in Paris, Abu Dhabi, South Africa, and England on their honeymoon. Their April beats yours. Hands down. These are some pictures I snapped during the chaos of setting up, but I can’t wait to see the professional ones. When we get those, and I come down from this wedding high, I’ll post all the gory details! Until then, enjoy!

 

#watchusroam 

5 weird things it’s okay to feel about your wedding flowers

Ro is getting married in. three. days. The countdown is seriously on. Flowers are on my brain today because I am anxious to get my hands on them and style the sh*t out of her centerpieces on Saturday. Out of the millions of details there are to plan about weddings, flowers can provide a nice thorn in your side (get that pun, there?) when you are a.) trying to stick to a budget, and b.) not a professional florist – so no, flower lady, we don’t know the technical name of all 30 flowers in the sample bouquet picture we showed you, that’s your job. Sound familiar? Flowers are expensive, and can eat away at your budget in about the time it takes for a sprig of lavender to droop, which I’ve recently learned, is quickly. So here are some feelings you may have considered, but swept under the rug because it wasn’t what everyone was doing on Pinterest. Commit to a few of them or all to make your flower process smell like roses.

1. It is okay to purchase flowers for your event from two different places to stay within your budget. As long as you have a clear vision of what you want. For example, having a trusted local expert doing your bridal bouquet is worth the money for the piece of mind. Buying flowers in bulk from a wholesaler or grocery to have your designer or wedding coordinator (or mom) arrange on site the day of can save you some major cash. Be sure you have coordinated people to keep the flowers in water and fresh until the ceremony and reception.

2. Go small and local when choosing a florist for the major flower items you are spending the most money on. Add sustainable if possible. The customer service small flower shops deliver is usually like having your own personal flower concierge. They appreciate your business, you appreciate them not sending hateful, impersonal corporate emails. (Can you tell we had a bad experience?) Also if you get a few quotes, you can take them back to your favorite one and discuss price points

Thanks to Style Me Pretty, this is the sample photo we took to a local florist to get Ro's point across about the direction she saw her flowers going. And this lady just got it. Very refreshing after trying to deal with others who were not as helpful.

Thanks to Style Me Pretty, this is the sample photo we took to a local florist to get Ro’s point across about the direction she saw her flowers going. And this lady just got it. Very refreshing after trying to deal with others who were not as helpful. Thanks Holliday Flowers!

3. Your flowers can be simple. And that can be a good thing. Not one person is going to wake up the morning after your wedding exclaiming positively about the twenty-foot tower of lilies you had on your buffet. Less is more sometimes, as cliché as it is. Especially if you’re using an outdoor venue, like Ro. A garden setting is already filled with foliage, and adding tons of expensive flowers will just get lost in the scene. Play off the greens of an outdoor wedding by choosing flowers that pop with your wedding colors. They’ll stand out more and you can purchase less of them.

4. Don’t be scared of the flowers with the funky textures. Going a little more of a less traditional route with your flower choices will add a memorable touch and element of surprise. Just do it in cost-effective ways, like inserting a few into your bouquets, not in centerpieces. Your bouquets are going in life long photographs and help tell your wedding story. For example, succulents are super trendy now, but can cost an insane amount. Instead, try out green ball Dianthus or lamb’s ear (my favorite!). Word of caution: these moments are where doing your research on what you want your bouquets to look like and providing sample pictures will help you out immensely.

5. You can use fake flowers. But only if these decorations are going to add an important visual element to a wedding scene, and aren’t going to be in an area of close-up guest inspection. There’s nothing prettier than a flowing garland of greenery, vines and blooms floating in the air above a bride and groom. But those puppies are pricey. I suggest making your own, or setting a crafty friend on the job. Stock up when craft stores have their fake flower/plant sales and save big time. Use green flower tape and wire to mesh different pieces together to add bulk and depth if you’re making a garland. Also don’t be afraid to pop those flower heads off of their stands and sub them in on other stems. Most fake flowers will pop right off and on, no harm done. After Saturday I will post a short demo on how I made Ro’s garland (and how great it looked!), saving her about $300.  You can do fake, just don’t buy thirty tubs of fake marigolds and place on every table. You’re better off without at that point.

What are your wedding flower pointers? Or horror stories, those are good too.

#watchusroam