Monday, September 15, 2014

Kelly and Stephen

It's official: I designed my first wedding and I lived to tell the tale. Kelly and Stephen were married at the Commons, in Topsfield, Massachusetts. I had never heard of the Commons before, until the bride's mother, Dorothy, asked me to meet her there. From the moment I pulled up to the door, it was love at first sight. Boasting a quasi-Georgian exterior, it had the classic elegance of the South. Once I made my way inside, I followed the curve of the staircase up to the second level to find the most spectacular ballroom that I had ever seen. I'm not kidding; the room just glowed like the color of champagne, with light flooding in through the amazing oversized windows that ran along both sides of the ballroom. Was it vision of cream, or a dream?

There were several outbuildings on the premises, including a barn and garden. We were not able to view these spaces, as it was early March, and the snow and ice made for treacherous conditions. That was alright, because I was convinced from what I had seen that the unique combination of spaces at The Commons made it the perfect home for the union of a Texan and a Bostonian. Knowing that the bride and groom would be sporting cowboy boots on their wedding day, I could already envision the photo-op against the backdrop of the vertically planked barn. You might even be able to fool the viewer into thinking that the wedding was in Texas ;)

While Kelly and Stephen were working out all the details of their wedding day, I was having fun focusing on my end of things. I was at ease working with Kelly's color palette of green and white, as I knew it would be crisp and striking against the backdrop of a New England summer. She had decided that even though the bridesmaids would be wearing navy, which I absolutely loved, she was not going to be adding blue into the floral arrangements. I have to admit that I was secretly relieved, because the addition of blue might have made the overall color theme less subdued. When thinking about the marrying of colors for weddings and events, I like to create a grouping of mental images that I can visualize during the process, to help achieve the proper balance. A summer vision of leaf-filled trees as they drape and cover, enclaves of green grass that sparkle in the sun, blue and white hydrangea spilling over picket fences, and the deep blue of the Atlantic Ocean were some of the images that I played over in my mind.

The day turned out to be picture-perfect, not too hot, and not too cold, but just right. The hint of wind that swirled around Kelly made her veil dance in celebration. She was an absolutely stunning bride, in an ivory lace gown that had the most flattering mermaid silhouette. When I arrived at The Commons, I immediately hung the welcome wreaths on the front door. They were designed on a grapevine wreath base, and were adorned with olive branches (to signify the joining of two families), roses, and snow-on-the-mountain. Topiaries and ferns were added to flank the ceremony location in the side-garden. Dorothy had rather liked the idea of Boston fern from the start, and I decided to kick it up a notch and add triple ball eugenia. They would be a reflection of Boston itself, where you often see fern and topiary planters in the entryways of Beacon Hill brownstones.

As the wedding party began taking photos outside in the garden, I wrapped up the outdoor designs with the addition of navy archival cones, filled with olive branch, fuji mums, and baby's-breath. The cones were made by the bride's mom, Dorothy, who wanted to put her creative stamp on the day. They added a punch of color to the all white chairs, which were nestled in the bright green grass. Moving up to the ballroom, I could see that it was just as beautiful as I had remembered. As the wait staff was still in the middle of setting up, I quickly placed each table arrangement, made with a combination of Mondial and Super Green roses, which played off the trachelium, hydrangea, and olive branch. I took a deep breath and realized that my part was done, and now it would be all party, party, party. As my helper and I drove away, we decided that a nice filet of beef, with mashed sweet potato and a little wine, was just what we needed, to end on a happy note.

Thanks to the Goodwin and Kincheloe Families for letting me be part of their special day. It was an honor! #KINCHELOVE!

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