Wednesday, 28 December 2011

Chris & Jessica's Vintage Fiesta Wedding!

I love this wedding design so much and the couple involved that it's hard for me to post and say "adios" to the whole experience ;). Jessica was big into fashion and that whole world so patterns and visualization was a very big deal to her and she taught me A LOT with her own wedding dress selections (she had 2!), her daughter's flower girl dress (so super cute), the varied patterns and designs for her bridesmaid dresses and the amazing decorative ties the groomsmen and groom carried off. It's not often I have a bride who says "let your creative self go - I'm all for it" - much like letting an artist into a studio and giving them thousands of colors to choose from in order to create their picture.  I knew we would hit it off when Jessica sent me their invites - a replica of Frida & Diego Riviera's wedding photograph!  And, of course, to top it off, Chris & Jessica are completely heart people - when I first met Chris, the day before the wedding, the first thing he did was give me a huge hug and tell me how happy he was to meet me. Sweet! And Jessica is just light and warmth incarnate.

 Place: Hacienda Camino del Mar
Caterer: Andres of ByB
Bride Photographer: Vallarta's very own Elizabeth Lloyd aka photographer rockstar
DJ: Hombres del Negro
Flamenco Guitarists:  Latcho & Andrea
Staff Photographer: Soko the Great
Minister: Tamara Bradley de Morales of Chic Concepts
Cake: Memo of Charme

We needed something vintage, something colorful, something artistic and artesanal, a nod to Frida Kahlo but not about Frida Kahlo ... and this is the end result design board...


Jessica had really loved a scene in the movie Frida where Frida and her friends are having a dinner party - once we established that this was going to be the feeling we wanted for the wedding, I realized that I wanted to have pops of color for the ceremony but utilize a variety of chairs and chair colors - to continue the feeling that you just brought down the chairs from your house to have the ceremony.

I love this chuppah - painted a bright turquoise blue with beautiful handmade papel picado - Omar did an amazing job of incorporating some of the elements popular in Frida's paintings as well as popular Mexican folk art.  I asked my sister-in-law, Yazmine, to paint the stained glass circular centerpiece and blew me away how close it came to the original idea.

I had ordered some special wedding bubbles from Etsy but they didn't arrive in time so the team swung into action and my other sister-in-law, Gaby (I did mention, right, that the business is a family affair ;) created these awesome cloth covered bubbles with cute heart tags.  Antonio worked hard on the milagro heart wooden fans and we had a picture perfect ceremony set-up.

Jessica had sent me this amazing photograph of a big red floral bouquet and I knew I wanted that deep rich, red color but a bit more wild floral look to it.  I found the heart charm on her bouquet on a trip to Tonala in Guadalajara.  I don't think we have a picture of the matching heart we also placed on Chris' bout.

Jessica had told me that she didn't care if the bridesmaids held flowers or not or if they just had flowers in their hair and I thought having them carry signs, representative of the signage we had through-out the wedding, would be perfect.  When they lead Jessica to the ceremony the signs read "Here Comes the Bride" and when they left, they flipped their signs around to read "Happily Ever After."  ;)

Ruby looked beautiful in her flower girl dress - Jessica had mentioned wanting a butterfly bouquet for her and I found these amazing beaded butterflies and we created some butterflies made out of loteria paper - Omar did an amazing job and I heart heart the end result.


After the ceremony, we led everyone back up to the Hacienda for cocktails up at the main house.  Jessica had brought a pretty poster which we laid out for guests to sign.  We hung memory boards along the cocktail area and placed pictures which Jessica and her family had brought to share.  I do believe it was as much fun for us to see as the guests :).  We had hand punched metal tins with bright paper flowers for cocktail centerpieces.  That was actually a last minute purchase I saw when I was out and about and fell in love with.  And, of course, colorful papel picado banners.


After the cocktail, we led everyone up to the roof top - I've always wanted to do something up there - it's so beautiful - but just never had the right event.  We used mismatched tables and couches to create a very intimate dinner scene.  Centerpieces were bright talavera pots filled with miniature roses, ranunculus, mums zempazuchil and alstromeria.  We had colorful wine bottles topped with colorful candles and spots of talavera tiles laid on the table.  Tables were covered with lace table runners.  And, of course, mismatched chairs and sofas covered with pillows representing the bride's colors and love for pattern.  Dinner was set-up in stations so that people could go and get tacos al pastor or carne asada quesadillas right as they were made.



We did have a bride and groom table created especially for Jessica & Chris - I love how colorful it was and how intimate - right in the midst of a big dinner party :).

We had been talking about a scene from The Princess and the Frog (seeing that we both had 3 year old daughters, well, it makes sense ;), and we both had loved a scene with bright colored bottles hanging in the trees.  I had some beautiful colored bottles made and then asked Yazmine to put her artistic touch on some of them with various patterns and colors.  We turned them on just as they started their first dance and the "oohs" were awesome to hear :).  As the dancing went into full gear, we passed out colorful maracas with a gold painted milagro heart and their names and date on the back.

They wanted a cake that looked absolutely edible (even though, in reality, is not real ;) and Memo did a fantastic job - both with the cutting cake and the actual cake which was absolutely delicious!

I heart heart this photobooth - it was a lot bigger than I had imagined it to be but that worked out well as people loved to cram into it all night long and take wild and crazy pictures.

This wedding was so much fun to design and create and the open heartedness of the couple, along with their guests, was the cherry on top of this yummy ice-cream sundae.

Coming-up I have OODLES of shout-outs to maraca brides so more maraca pictures will be here soon, I promise!  And don't forget to enter the WINWIN contest to win 20 of our hand-painted maracas - contest drawing is January 15th!

Friday, 16 December 2011

Shannon & Craig's Romantic Beach "i do's"

When Shannon first emailed me she told me she would be one of the easiest brides I ever had. Well, that can always go one of two ways ... either she really WOULD be the easiest bride EVER OR things would be a bit more detailed than that ;). Turns out, Shannon was by far THE most laid-back, relaxed bride I've ever had and I've had some really relaxed brides! Every time I tried to schedule something Shannon was like "oh, that's okay, we'll just decide when we get there" ;);). Of course, part of it could be that Shannon & Craig were renewing their vows after 20+ years of marriage ;).

Staff Photographer: Soko

There were a few things Shannon told me she wanted ... one of which was candles on the beach. I loved that entire idea! She knew she wanted the color plum, but was open to whatever suggestions I might have. This is what I came up with :).

I knew the biggest attention would be going into the ceremony, because they really wanted a simple cocktail arrangement for dinner. We lined lanterns down the walkway to the beach and I had the guys make some papel picado bags, as I wasn't quite sure the lanterns would make an impressive enough walk-way ... which they did! So, we put the papel picado bags around the ceremony area.

I wanted the ceremony to look a bit more like you took chairs down from the house and used them as part of the ceremony, so I chose the Versalles, instead of the Chivari. I thought the phrase "From this Day Forward" was really fitting, considering the renewal of vow ceremony - I suppose like a marker ... a continuation :).

Shannon's bouquet was a mix of roses, lisianthius, calla lily, a bit of delphinium and purple filler. I made the bridesmaids bouquets out of white roses and lisianthius.

I'm not entirely sure where the maraca idea came from, but I stumbled across it as I was doing research and I loved the look of it - I think Omar did an incredibly beautiful job with this talavera like flower.

After the ceremony, everyone walked back up to the villa and we had a small cocktail party underneath the palapa. We had a couple of cocktail tables draped with plum and light blue fabric with a small, beach-like floral arrangement in the same flowers as the bride's bouquet. We strung some Christmas lights up above, placed some floating lanterns in the pool and, wa-la, ready to relax and party :).

We did have a small surprise for the bride and groom at the end of the night with a small firedancer show - but I don't have pictures of that - it involved a lot of fire and dancing :):). Shannon and her group were sweet, kindness personified and completely chill. We are very honored to have been part of their renewal ceremony.

I do have some shout-outs and the photos from Jessica's wedding are burning a hole in my computer and her wedding blog will be coming-up right around Christmas time - nice eye candy to view while you're cuddled around the fire :). Don't forget to enter the WINWIN contest and have the opportunity to win 20 of our hand-painted maracas - the drawing is less than a month away!
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