Antonia Christianson has three words when considering color: Go for it. "If you’re only focused on using it for the big things, like the bridesmaids' dresses or the flowers and cake, it will look like random pops of color thrown in. It won’t look cohesive," says Antonia, who’s the force behind Antonia Christianson Events of Virginia Beach, VA and Pasa Robles, California.
Case in point is this Norfolk, VA wedding, which featured an abundance of turquoise and emerald —colors chosen because they so perfectly matched the historic grounds at the Hermitage Museum and Gardens where the intimate fall ceremony and reception took place. Upon arrival, guests were greeted with vibrant splashes of turquoise — a nod to the nearby water — which popped out as table settings, the three-tier cake color and the seat cushion hues. The bridal party also wore vivid turquoise dresses. And while the color grabbed guests' attention, what held it was the layering of soft greens everywhere else.
Succulents were handed out as favors with a reminder that "love grows." The turquoise and white fondant lattice cake by Patti Cakes, Inc. is almost too pretty to slice.
Tucked inside the centerpieces were green apples, grapes, baby artichokes, and cabbages. The stemware and table settings were a shimmering mix of blues and greens — a detail that was unexpectedly highlighted by the setting sun as guests made their way from the ceremony to the reception.
The plates are both something borrowed and something blue. Menus and all paper goods by RSVP Stationery. The china was another lucky find: "I was able to borrow a friend’s china set that just happened to have strong touches of turquoise," Antonia says. "This couple had fun with their color choice: It became a sophisticated, subtle theme for the day that perfectly told their story."
Vinatge keys draped around bouquets and centerpieces represented the "unlocking of their love story."
Photo Credit: Eleise Theuer Photography
Laura Grim had three must-haves for her wedding: "I wanted the ceremony to take place in a lush setting, I wanted every detail to reflect my love of all things vintage and I wanted to pull it all together with one bold color."
Her choice of marigold came easily, as it’s "my favorite happy color," says Laura, who happens to be co-founder of Portland, Oregon’s Double Take Event Styling. To stay on budget, Laura scoured her own home (and those of close friends and family) for several of the accent pieces, like the heirloom dishes that graced the custom candy bar. Other repurposed antiques included wire bird cages that covered several small centerpieces and reclaimed picture frames that had been painted a uniform gold and placed down the center of the tables.
Stylish suitcases and trunks from various eras were strategically used to help put the 250 guests in a Great Gatsby-type of party mood, as well as to mark different areas of the reception. She also used her own vintage costume jewels and baubles to artfully accent table arrangements, including flowers and stacks of old books that she’d tied together. Gold-leafed initials punctuated tidy green wreaths.
What Laura couldn’t borrow she made. Table runners, for example, were cut from rolls of basic burlap, which she hand-stenciled and topped with a narrower piece of marigold-striped silk. "Layering gold and crisp white into the details along with touches of black allowed the vibrant marigold to be the star," she says. "Using my favorite color strategically — I put a lot of thought into when and where to use it — I think it lent a real French charm to the day. It was exactly what I wanted!"
Menus were tucked into rose wrapped linen napkins.
The bride chose a vintage-modern look for her bridesmaids: sunny yellow dresses with black accessories.
Photo Credit: Krissy Allori Photography
Red may be known as the color of romance, but there’s a strong case to be made for coral, which gives off its own romantic vibe with an added burst of happy and playful that red just can’t compete with. At least that’s the opinion of this Virginia couple, who asked Shannon O’Kelley, the design partner of Sage Nines Event Productions in Nashville, to make coral the central theme of their wedding at The Inn at Willow Grove in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains.
The bride, a letterpress designer for Lennah Press, had already chosen her hue before she met with Shannon. She’d also gotten a head start on creating the invitations and other paperie. So Shannon simply picked up on those cues and ran with it. "We wanted to use coral everywhere we could," says Shannon, "but we also knew that finding the right accent colors would make the coral really stand out."
The historic Inn at Willow Grove welcomed guests for the festivities.
Guests got a hint of what was to come seeing the coral-befrocked bridesmaids carrying bouquets from Sugar Magnolias, but the big reveal was saved for the reception itself: coral, mint and gold cushions, and lavish floral arrangements in every iteration of coral from spicy-toned dahlias to almost-pink garden roses to pale peach astilbe.
Silk chiffon flowers and dried palms bedeck the bride's and groom's chairs. Table numbers were hand-stamped onto small blocks of wood while voltives were wrapped in coral paper.
Mint green table linens served as a quiet, neutral background while gold-leafed vases and candlesticks added a shimmery, elegant touch.
The four-tiered cake with adorable dog topper was accented with fresh blooms and pretty voltives.
"This couple really knew how to use color to their advantage," says Shannon. "They picked key elements and focused their attention to color there. The coral suited their romance, their style, the setting, and set a happy, relaxed mood for their guests. It became the perfect theme for the day."
Photo Credit: Elisa Bricker Photography