Modern and rustic wedding in shades of cream and peach

Wow, it’s getting a little ridiculous on this blog… and I even promised to write more consistently!  Okay, okay, I really PROMISE to be better at our blog schedule so you can keep up with what we’re working on.  I do realize that you’re not all fans of KPD on Facebook- although you can be :)

So, we’re halfway through October and we have weddings all the way through the beginning of December this season, so we’re still in the thick of it over here!  I thought a quick little reminder of summer breezes and the amazing smell of peonies might cheer everyone up as the leaves begin to fall for the upcoming winter.

Here are a few images from a wedding we designed and executed in late June on the Seacoast of NH.  Under a Sperry Tent- our favorites, this wedding was full of really modern touches from the plate glass long centerpieces to the unique multi-layered paper lantern installation.  The Rustic elements appeared in wooden farm tables, ratan chargers, and lacy dusty miller.  A great symmetry that we were SO happy with, so enjoy them for yourselves!

All images are from Ian Aldrich

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Happy planning!

KPsig

Kate Parker Designs is a Maine wedding planner and NH florist specializing in New England chic weddings and customized welcome bags.  Providing day of, partial, full wedding planning services as well as floral and event design options, Kate Parker Designs offers impeccable service and unparalleled designs

 

New KPD editorial feature: NH Magazine’s BRIDE Fall/Winter 2013

 

industrial mill wedding

We LOVE LOVE working with NH Magazine’s BRIDE on theirr feature articles.  We try to create a feature that is really attainable to readers in both style and price point and then a feature that is a bit more outside of the box in terms of scale and inspiration.  The fall/winter 2013 issue just came out and this is our stretch feature for the year.  I honestly have to say that this is one of my favorite tables I’ve ever designed.  Our new studio is in a mill in downtown Dover, NH and when I started thinking about a venue for the shoot, I realized how many mill towns we had around the state.  After talking to the dream team of vendors we work with every time on these features, we decided my new studio space would be the perfect backdrop for the shoot.  Then it was time for me to head to Home Depot for supplies!

The table design, bouquets, and even the props throughout the shoot are all industrial items you can find in a hardware store.  I quite frankly have no idea what half of them are used for, but I am now a big fan of over sized FLANGES!  It’s always an adventure going to Home Depot for wedding related projects.  The people who work there always wonder what I’m up to with sheets of plywood and lengths of PVC pipe.  This trip was no exception.  Here are a few pics from said trip:

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I found the largest flanges I could find and I knew I wanted to rest a single white phalaenopsis blossom on each one in the center of each dinner plate. Final result = awesomeness. This is a great shot of the natural wood grain we went with for the table top surface.

 

An idea that didn't end up in the final design, I found these amazing 12" square stainless steel plates that I thought would make amazing chargers.  The final verdict was I didn't want to cover up too much of the amazing wood grain on the table top and I was a bit worried about too much of a shiny surface to photograph on.

An idea that didn’t end up in the final design, I found these 12″ square stainless steel plates that I thought would make amazing chargers. The final verdict was I didn’t want to cover up too much of the amazing wood grain on the table top and I was a bit worried about too much of a shiny surface to photograph on.

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So, you would normally make fun of a mini van. When you can fit a 40″ x 96″ piece of plywood in said van, however, you immediately love this mode of transportation. Definitely not the safest way to drive, but the studio is only ten minutes from the Depot.

Now I have to thank the dream team we put together for each and every NH Magazine’s BRIDE feature.  I couldn’t possibly put these shoots together without their help and creativity:

Photographer: Mark Davidson – Mark D Photo -  co-mayor

Cake: Wild Orchid Baking – Magical Unicorn who makes magical fondant

Stationery: Gus & Ruby Letterpress – Gruby ladies

Makeup: Joya beauty – Jojo Pancake

Hair: Hair that Moves – Lena who makes amazing nail polish necklaces the night before our shoot

Formalwear: Madeleine’s Daughter – Renee the amazing seamstress who helped out that day

Food: Flavor Concepts – Who can make a beet look better?

Rentals: Be Our Guest- my very first vendor I met in 2003 and I haven’t looked elsewhere since

Here is the rest of the article and a link to more images that didn’t make the magazine.

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For additional images from the shoot, click here to check out NH Magazine’s BRIDE online feature!

Happy designing!

KPsig

Kate Parker Designs is a Maine wedding planner and NH florist specializing in New England chic weddings and customized welcome bags.  Providing day of, partial, full wedding planning services as well as floral and event design options, Kate Parker Designs offers impeccable service and unparalleled designs

 

 

Custom design touches – Taking your event to the next level

Here at KPD we consider every event to be a custom design. While our clients often have a starting point for color inspiration, style, or specific floral pieces they would like to include, we also have clients who tell us “we trust you, make this all look awesome!” Whether you know exactly what you want, or are looking for us to take the reigns entirely, we start with a blank slate every time.

This brings me to a design feature from a wedding you’ve already seen a few sneak peeks of. Ashley and Chris’ Boston Wedding was bright and colorful and full of personality, we had 1000 Japanese paper cranes in ombre shades of orange (Chris’ favorite color) and pink (Ashley’s favorite color) representing Chris’ heritage, we had sparkly glitter centerpieces that made Ashley super happy, but we were missing something…

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Our couple lives and works in Boston, and they knew they were getting married at the Museum of Science, but they wanted an aspect of their design to represent their connection to the city. We discussed a few options and ended up deciding to use the silhouette of the Zakim bridge as a focal point. Not only did we end up incorporating the shape into the invitations, but I designed and built a scale model of the bridge to serve as a backdrop for the placecard table…a table that ended up located in front of a window with a view of the actual bridge in the background!

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Details like this can push your entire design over the top, and have your guests buzzing for days, months, even years afterwards! Plus it helps when that design element becomes a featured centerpiece in a shrine of sorts for the newlyweds.

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Congratulations to Ashley and Chris, and I hope this gives you all a sense of our commitment to creating a unique design for every client!

Cheers,

Boss #2

Thanks to Todd Ward Studios for the top three images, and to the bride, Ashley Firth, a great wedding photographer herself, for the shot of the bridge in her house.

Kate Parker Designs is a Maine wedding planner and NH florist specializing in New England chic weddings and customized welcome bags.  Providing day of, partial, full wedding planning services as well as floral and event design options, Kate Parker Designs offers impeccable service and unparalleled designs

Behind the design- the final product

Last year I showed you a sketch of the 1000 paper crane backdrop I was designing for a wedding that just took place in Boston at the Museum of Science in June.  It was interesting to go back and read the inspiration for the concept:

Ashley and Chris are getting married, so the cliche statement “two become one” makes sense here. Since her favorite color is pink and his is orange, why not do the same to the color palate? We are going to create a wall of 1000 paper cranes behind Ashley and Chris during their ceremony. We are going to string 50 cranes on 20 lengths of fishing wire across a set of pipe and drape covered in white fabric. In between every three paper cranes, we will put a flower blossom in coordinating colors. From the far left of the wall, we will start with the palest of pink cranes and flowers. As we move left to right, the pinks will become deeper and brighter, ending 1/3 of the way across the wall in a vivid hot pink. On the far right side of the wall, we will start with the palest of orange paper cranes and flowers. As move right to left, the oranges will be come brighter and brighter, ending 1/3 of the way across the wall in a vivid orange. The middle 1/3 of the wall will be a combination of both orange and pink cranes. Each strand will have a blend of the two colors, and the intensities of the colors will be mixed up as well. The opposite flower color and paper crane color will be next to one another.

Here’s what the original sketch looked like:

full wall

When we arrived at the museum for set up, it occurred to us immediately that hand stringing the mokara and denbrobium orchids was going to take way too long and it was going to really take away from the striking colors that were produced when the blossoms were clustered together naturally on their stems.  I’ve said it before, I work best under pressure.  Controlled chaos is my jam.  I immediately stopped the concept dead in its tracks and created a whole new backdrop with the orchids on their stems.  Instead of having the ombre affect only happening in the paper cranes that Ashley and Chris folded, I decided to also attach the orchids across the top of the pipe and drape in the same ombre color pattern.  This gave the installation great additional structure and scale and really added to the color changes.  Here are a few details of the cranes and flowers and a final photo of the entire backdrop.  Thanks to Todd Ward Studios for the images.

light pink to dark pink from left to right and light orange to dark orange from right to left.

light pink to dark pink from left to right and light orange to dark orange from right to left.

Finished product in all its glory.

Finished product in all its glory.

You really can’t find a more beautiful view of the city and the river in all of Boston.  The Museum is a hidden gem for sure and their team was amazingly easy to work with.

Kiss!

The Kiss!

I hope this gives you a little insight on our process and how sometimes things on paper don’t quite end up being installed.  It’s all about the overall concept and what works best in for the space and for the client.

Happy designing!

KPsig

Kate Parker Designs is a Maine wedding planner and NH florist specializing in New England chic weddings and customized welcome bags.  Providing day of, partial, full wedding planning services as well as floral and event design options, Kate Parker Designs offers impeccable service and unparalleled designs

 

 

 

 

Planning advice: Incorporting a family heirloom into your wedding

Happy Wednesday everyone!  We survived the rain up here in northern Maine on our mini vacation with my brother and new sister-in-law, Jon and Amanda, and this morning I wanted to share with you a few really creative ways you can incorporate a family heirloom into your wedding.

Amanda incorporated her mother’s wedding dress- which was from 1987 and had the most glorious puffy long sleeves ever- into three parts of her wedding weekend.

The first and the most unique was that Amanda actually wore her mother Marnie’s wedding dress at her rehearsal dinner.  The dress was altered and adjusted by a very talented seamstress who was recommended by Madeleine’s Daughter in Portsmouth where Amanda got her wedding gown.  Ofishel Designs & Tailoring out of Manchester, NH did an amazing job preserving Marnie’s gown while making it modern for Amanda to wear.  Here’s a photo of Amanda and Marnie:

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The entire full ballroom skirt was taken off and reattached with less fullness, cut right at the knee.  The top of gown was completely intact except for the most glorious long puffy sleeves, complete with V detailing at the end of each arm.  I absolutely set up Amanda’s wedding wearing one of the sleeves and it was amazing.

The wedding day we incorporated a piece of Marnie’s dress around the bridal bouquet

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Satin, pearls and lace, oh my! Image from Mark Davidson Photography

The final way Amanda incorporated her mother’s dress into the wedding was on her actual gown.  Small pieces of lace were added to the sweetheart neckline.  So pretty and sneaky- I had no idea she had added Marnie’s lace until someone pointed it out!

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It looked like the lace belonged there all along!  Image from Mark Davidson Photography

All in all these touches were a wonderful ode to Amanda’s mother and her parent’s wedding and I really enjoyed seeing the reaction they brought to her friends and family. Hopefully you can find ways to incorporate family heirlooms into your wedding as well!

Happy planning!

KPsig

Kate Parker Designs is a Maine wedding planner and NH florist specializing in New England chic weddings and customized welcome bags.  Providing day of, partial, full wedding planning services as well as floral and event design options, Kate Parker Designs offers impeccable service and unparalleled designs

 

Music- one of the most important aspects of your event

Whether you hire a live band or a DJ for your event, music really has the most influence over the vibe of your party.  The right song selections, good transitions, minimal interaction with your guests, and an overall ability to read the crowd are the key elements to great entertainment.

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Bride enjoying a moment in the limelight with the crowd. Image from www.mark-davidson.com

There’s certainly give and take when it comes to selecting your songs and especially on what songs not to play. Line dances are a thing of the past and most DJ’s will assume you don’t want to hear them.  Be clear and state that in writing, otherwise the Cha-cha Slide might all of the sudden have your aunt on the dance floor learning a new move.

When it comes to hiring a band, you want to consider the size and scale of your wedding guest list.  If you’re having more than 150 guests, I would suggest a 6-8 person band.  A 4-5 person band is totally appropriate for a 100-150 person wedding.  I would consider live music for your ceremony and cocktail hour for weddings under 100 guests instead of a full reception band.  There is an intimacy you will create with a smaller group of your friends and family and a band can take that away a bit, especially if there are 8-10 people in the band!  For weddings closer to 200 guests and above, the sky is really the limit… well, and your music budget of course.  You can consider a band with 8-10 members or even a full big band orchestra!

Regardless of the direction you go in, whether it’s a DJ for every part of your wedding day, live musicians for your ceremony and cocktail hour and hire a DJ for your dancing, or a full band for the entire event, make sure you hire someone you’re comfortable with.  Make sure they have a strong web presence, lots of reviews, lots of live samples if you’re considering a band, and make sure they fit the personality of your wedding before you hire them.  I can honestly say that this is one of the most important investments you’ll make at your wedding and that you get what you pay for in this department.

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There’s always one dancer who’s by far better than everyone else… This was that guy… No question. Image from www.mark-davidson.com

Happy Planning!

KPsig

Kate Parker Designs is a Maine wedding planner and NH florist specializing in New England chic weddings and customized welcome bags.  Providing day of, partial, full wedding planning services as well as floral and event design options, Kate Parker Designs offers impeccable service and unparalleled designs