Micro Wedding at Montelucia

Allow us to be real for a few…. there are definitive trends in wedding palettes.  Blush, gold, navy, peach, sage…. the colors you choose truly depends on the design style you lean towards.  When Stephanie called us looking for a designer and planner for her intimate wedding at the Montelucia‘s Camelback Villa, she warned us (her words) that her vision was unconventional.

Not wanting a large scale event, but not wanting to elope, Stephanie and Jesse opted for a micro-wedding – an intimate gathering of family and friends.  A traditional elopement is the bride, groom, minister and maybe two witnesses.  Inviting 14 or so members of your family doesn’t qualify as an elopement.  Enter the term micro-wedding – a celebration containing all the elements of a traditional large-scale wedding but with far fewer guests.  We have seen an uptick in micros over the past few years and honestly, we are digging the trend.

But we digress, back to Stephanie and Jesse… We may, or may not, have done a small happy dance at the prospect of designing a fall-time jewel-toned wedding.  Stephanie, a destination bride, turned over design control to us and we ran full-speed ahead.

With no bridesmaids, Stephanie was hanging with us in the immense and gorgeous Camelback Villa.  Normally I would be a bit on edge with a bride watching our every move during install and set, but Steph just chilled, cool as a cucumber and comfortable in her denim shirt and shorts, against the door jamb of the master suite and chatted.  If we ever let a bride lift the veil and watch our controlled chaos again, then she must promise to be as relaxed as Steph.  I mean, come on, who else can pull off this look?!!

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One of my favorite selling points about the Camelback Villa is the amazing view of Camelback Mountain.  Granted, in the following photo, you only see the head, but trust me, that camel is magnificent. Steph and Jesse opted for no attendants to share the altar which set the tone that, while family is important, they have each other. They also opted for a simple altar set, two manzanita trees adorned with hanging candles and Moroccan lanterns – both to provide ambient light once the sun set.

 

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The couple didn’t want a unity candle or sand ceremony but wanted to commemorate their union in a unique and meaningful way so Gwen Waring of Arizona Ministers suggested a ring warming ceremony.  Now, normally we would not advocate for passing the actual wedding rings around during the ceremony, but this group seemed pretty trustworthy so we decided to throw caution to the wind! The concept is that the family and friends each have the opportunity to hold the rings and pray over them or offer a wish, hope or dream for the couple’s future.

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While the ceremony reflected a simple palette, Steph’s love for bold colors was clearly visible inside the Villa.  The 20-foot wooden dining table served as the foundation for a garden of orange, purple, violet, red and yellow flowers nestled in wooden boxes and gold leafed vases and surrounded by gold mercury votives. The hydrangea were the perfect shade of purple.  We couldn’t have planned it better.

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The piece de resistance, in our opinion, was the white pumpkins, set atop plum satin napkins and gold beaded clear glass chargers.  Each pumpkin was dual purpose, serving as a place card and brining a bit of fall to the table (after all, this was a Thanksgiving weekend wedding).

We mentioned that micro-weddings contain all the elements of a traditional large-scale wedding and this wedding was no different.  From cake cutting, to the first dance as husband and wife, to favors and the most ingenious money tree I’ve ever seen, this wedding was rich on emotion.

 

Today We’re Loving: Citrus Orange

It’s summer in Phoenix and the citrus trees in our yard have fruit! Lemons, limes, grapefruit, oranges – we love the fresh taste of citrus not to mention the bright, crisp colors.

We are completely crushing over this orange and green design we styled a short time ago for a showcase.  This color combination can be completely dreamy or completely horrifying depending on how it is pulled together.

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The antique spice cans, gold leaf bud vases and small clear milk jars were home to bright orange tulips, green hydrangea and cymbidium orchids. Accents of mercury votives, tree slabs and manzanita branches pulled the look together.
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We think this look is perfect for a bridal shower, baby shower, or ladies luncheon.  What is your favorite color combination?

Style Inspiration: TV Theme Design

We are often invited to participate in designer challenges in which we design a 10’x10′ space or table any way we choose.  The event is usually combined with a monthly meeting of our local NACE chapter (National Association of Catering Executives). To say that we enjoy these events is an understatement.  There are no parameters or guidelines and we love seeing what other designers bring to the table (pun completely intended).

Because we are designing for an event attended by our peers, and we are designing against our peers, the bar always seem high for these events.  It is important to find a concept that is a little out-of-the-box that is buzz-worthy.  Sometimes finding the right idea takes weeks, sometimes you find one piece of decor that speaks to you and everything just falls into place.  Thankfully, this is what happened with this challenge!

We fell in love with this jail door that actually is part of a western jail facade.  Luckily the door is a separate piece and it became the main element in our “Orange is the New Black” design theme.  Brushed aluminum walls mimicked the concrete walls of the cell and created the perimeter of our space while a single edison lightbulb hung in the center of the cell.

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We added a tall brushed aluminum communal table that seated 8, brushed aluminum barstools and a plethora of orange floral pieces in concrete pots, silver urns and clear glass vessels, accented with silver mercury votives.   Our place settings remained in theme with cafeteria trays we painted silver for the inmates and fine china for the warden and prison officers.  Orange napkins were gathered inside one handcuff and placed neatly on the cafeteria tray.  Place cards and the table number designator were adorned with a handcuff design as well.

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We aren’t sure what was more rewarding – the positive feedback on the design, or the fact that many attendees used the jail door as a photo op.  We love it when our designs are multi-purpose!