Friday, August 8, 2014

Boston Wedding Coordination: Yvonne and Phil's Artists For Humanity EpiCenter Wedding

Earlier this summer, I had the honor of coordinating Yvonne and Phil's wedding day.  There were traditional Door Games and a Chinese Tea Ceremony to start off the day, and then the bride and bridesmaids got ready with hair and makeup by Elaine Tsang, Christine Bellemare, and Tammy Tan.  The bride's bouquet contained white feathers and crystals, while the bridesmaids had modern bouquets of fresh calla lilies.

The bride and groom decided to do a first look so they could try to take most of their portraits in the afternoon before the ceremony.  The ceremony for 200 guests was held at Our Lady Help of Christians in Newton, and the bride and her father walked down the aisle to the classic "Trumpet Voluntary".  Following the ceremony, everyone made their way over to the reception in South Boston.

The cocktail hour and reception were held at the Artists For Humanity EpiCenter, and this was such a gorgeous and unique space for a wedding.  The art on the walls bring so much color to the space, and the bride and groom were really able to customize what they wanted the room to look like based on all of the rentals and decor that they chose.  All guest tables were covered with grey linens and surrounded by white garden chairs.  Origami flower centerpieces topped each table along with table numbers on baby easels and giant cookie favors that served as place cards.

The caterer for the event was the amazing, Cuisine Chev Vous, and for cocktail hour, they offered passed hors d'oeuvres such as gingered duck in sesame crepes, bruschetta with tomato, basil, and mozzarella, and fresh Vietnamese spring rolls with a cilantro sesame dipping sauce.  In addition to these passed hors d'oeuvres, there was a mashed potato cosmo bar which was a huge hit with the guests.

For dinner, guests enjoyed a spring mesclun green salad with roasted gala apples, spiced pecans, and crumbled goat cheese, followed by a choice of entrĂ©e:  herb crusted New England haddock with tomato and sweet pepper relish, marinated boneless beef shortrib with aged balsamic glazed onions and reduction, or portobello wellington with sherry coulis.  Instead of the traditional wedding cake, the bride and groom cut into a giant red velvet cupcake, and guests were treated to slices of New York style cheesecake.

DJ Sheldon Gentles from EPIC Entertainment kept everyone dancing all night, and he also provided the uplighting and a fun prop-filled photo booth on the balcony throughout the wedding as well.  Here are some photos that I took of the day!


Yvonne and Phil, it was so great to be a part of your wedding day, and I hope you had the most amazing honeymoon in Hawaii!

~Emilie

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Emily and Carson's Gore Place Wedding Photos by Simply Bloom Photography

This is a long overdue post of one of the most gorgeous and DIY-filled weddings that I have ever coordinated. I had the honor of being the coordinator for Emily and Carson's "Up" themed wedding at Gore Place in Waltham, and their reception at China Pearl in downtown Boston.  The bridal party got ready with hair and makeup at the Courtyard Marriott in Brookline, and the entire wedding party participated in the traditional door games where the groom and groomsmen have to complete a series of tasks in order to see the bride.

After the door games, a tea ceremony was performed for the groom's family, and then everyone made their way over to Gore Place for the wedding ceremony.  The heartfelt ceremony took place in the hedge gardens at Gore Place, and this is such a unique space for a ceremony because everyone was completely surrounded by beautiful hedges, with access only through three narrow openings.  The bride and groom were married under a gorgeous floral arch created by Petalena, and placed "love notes" to each other in a box that they locked and will read to each other on their one year anniversary.  Flowers in tones of peach, green, and pink lined the aisle on shepherd hooks.

Following the ceremony, a cocktail hour was held outside on the lawn, with tables topped with lemon and gray linens, and small delicate floral arrangements from Petalena on little wooden slices, marked with Emily & Carson's initials.  The guestbook was placed on a table next to a large dollhouse (built by the groom!), topped with a large collection of colorful balloons.  Going along with the "Up" movie theme, there was a Paradise Falls jar filled with some change next to the dollhouse.  Guests enjoyed hors d'oeuvres from Currier & Chives like mini beef wellington and scallops wrapped in bacon, and there was also a large collection of colorful Izze sodas that was a huge hit with guests.  Lawn games such as croquet, bean bag toss, and bongo ball were setup near the cocktail hour area, and made for a very fun afternoon prior to the evening reception.

The traditional Chinese banquet reception was held at China Pearl in downtown Boston.  The room was decorated with dozens of hanging paper poms, as well as gold bengaline floor length linens.  The banquet consisted of 12 courses and was an absolute feast! DJ Profenna kept the night filled with music, and there was a Smilebooth setup in the room that was a really big hit. There were so many fun props and a sparkly silver background, and guests were able to take photo strips of their poses home with them.  The wedding cake was created by Jacques Pastries, and was decorated with mini penant flags.

Vania from Simply Bloom Photography, flew out to Boston from Alabama to document the big day.  Her photos are simply stunning!


Emily and Carson, it was so nice getting to know you both, and I hope you are enjoying married life!!

~Emilie

Monday, September 23, 2013

Baby Shower Cake Design Process - Adobe Illustrator to Reality

Although the majority of my business is in weddings, every once in a while I take on non-wedding events.  When my former bride, Arti, asked that I plan her baby shower at the Hyatt Boston Harbor, I knew that it was going to have to be the prettiest shower that I could possibly design!  Her wedding last year was a stunner (here & here).  This momma-to-be really knows what she likes, and amazingly, she gave me free rein in almost everything design and decor related.

Since the baby's gender is a surprise, she wanted to go with pink and blues.  I customized some ideas that she had for an invitation, and created the following out of two layers of luxe cotton cardstock and light blue tulle.


Having this as my guide for the rest of the event, I needed to come up with some cute ideas for all of the other little elements of the shower, including designing the baby shower cake! Being able to design the cake is not something that I typically am able to do with weddings. My clients always have their own ideas in mind, and never say, "Emilie, surprise me!" - so when I heard that this time around, I really wanted to make this a true surprise and just went with what I thought looked good.

It started with my beloved Adobe Illustrator. I began with the pink and blue colors, with a four tiered cake, a little hand-drawn bird, a possible banner, simplifying the design down to two tiers, adding ribbon, adding a little pearl border, and trying out different color combinations to see what would actually look good vs. what I think would look good in my head.



In the end, I wanted to have a cake closest to the second design page, bottom left cake.  I wasn't sure if the bird would be made out of fondant or possibly chocolate, or if I would have to make it out of paper, or if I would just print it as part of the banner that I wanted to make. I made an appointment with Konditor Meister for the cake design, specifically because they had a lot of the mini pastries that I also wanted to order for the event, and here is proof of my visit...


Just me and 10 pieces of CAKE! It's not all about the design, but I had to pick out flavors too! Yummm...  I had a great appointment with Deanna there, going over lots of specifics on what they were able to create and what was not as feasible.  They were not able to create the three dimensional bird easily and could only really pipe on a two dimensional bird, so I decided to print it on the banner instead, which I then cut out and tied with fuchsia string on to two pink striped straws. I used a needle to thread the string through the cardstock. The top layer (carrot cake) had rounded edges and was covered in a light blue rolled chocolate, and accented with a rolled chocolate white gardenia. There was also a small eyelet pink ribbon around the middle of the tier and pearls made of buttercream connecting tiers. The bottom tier (oreo cake) was covered in ombre style pink ruffle petals that cascaded down in layers. There was also a side sheet cake (needed for their 128 guests!) that was white cake with lemon and raspberry filling.

The cake turned out almost exactly as I had hoped it would. In my head, the petals were supposed to be a bit smaller so there would be more of them overall, but I was still very happy with the end result.  If I were to do it again, I should have specified exactly how wide and tall in inches I would have liked those petals to be instead of just saying that I wanted the petals to be "small" and having them just go off of my drawing.  Here is a quick photo from the baby shower that shows the details of the cake, which is in the middle of a large dessert bar.


I was going for a really "cute" cake and I think I was able to achieve it.  Most importantly, Arti loved it!  I really think that for me, going through the brainstorming process on paper or in Illustrator helped make for a better end product.  More to come later once the professional photos are in from Shannon Grant Photography!

~Emilie