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Wedding Highlight – Grace and Graham

October 16th, 2014 monamieevents Real Weddings, Uncategorized No comments

Fall Bridal Couple

Few people can say they met their future spouse at Indiana University’s Little 500 week long festivities.  I can say that.  Add Grace and Graham to the list.  The minute I met them and they told me that, I knew we were destined to work together on their upscale Hoosier Homecoming wedding celebration!

Our similarities didn’t stop there!  Grace’s mom, Debbie, and I share a birthday – what’s not to love about us Leos right 😉 , as a child Grace worked as a youth interpreter at Conner Prairie *(if you know me outside the event world, you know I adore those kids from 1836!) 😉 and Grace and Graham wanted to infuse a bit of IU Hoosier Hospitality into their wedding day.  This bride was meant to be mine!

Ensuring the wedding held the upscale, formal feeling their parents wanted, but give the whimsical, fresh and youthful touch this alumni couple deserved, needed a creative touch and constant level of mediation.  On her wedding day, Grace gave me the sweetest note, including the sentiment that she and her mom would not still be best friends if it weren’t for me keeping things in check during the planning process.  Grace, I’d do anything for you two – I really, really love your family!

Grace and Graham initially wanted a “red and white with poppy” wedding, and while  “candy cane stripes” might be appealing for a certain team’s basketball pants, a wedding palette admittedly needs more dimension.  The other interesting caveat, Grace.does.not.like.red.roses.  Helping her navigate a “red and white” wedding without this staple bloom, allowed additional colors to come into the palette and a very elegant wedding color story emerged.  Red, poppy, cinnamon, brick, garnet, fuchsia, merlot, terra cotta, and of course, “cream and crimson” 😉

Bridal Party

Grace and Graham selected the stately Indiana Landmarks Center for the ceremony and the grand JW Marriott for the reception celebration.  The juxtaposition between these two locations allowed for this warm fall palette to shine beautifully.  The Landmarks Center has a warm autumnal feeling, and Grace and Graham’s wedding seemed to be written for this space perfectly.

Indiana Landmarks Center

The ceremony highlighted a sunburst of fall color, robust organ music and readings from family – including Graham’s mom and Grace’s grandmother.  Before the ceremony Graham asked me the “protocol” on a “church kiss” – Graham — I approve – this one was perfect –  show the world you love her!  😉

Indiana Landmarks Center Ceremony

The day started in the JW’s presidential suite.  Grace and “her Goddesses” – as they were nicknamed at some point during the day (because of their stunning Grecian inspired gowns) got ready.  Grace, you are your namesake!  Elegant, calm, kind, thoughtful – and so are all of your friends. It was delightful to witness your bridal party all day.  The first hint of the wedding’s Indiana University infusion was actually in the guests’ welcome bags – a crimson pashmina wrap for the chilly October weekend.  The second Grace and Graham’s big request – “the cups.”  Anyone who attends IU knows of the cups that every bar and a certain (delicious!!) breadstiX location has and their famous shaped cup.  Grace included these cups on the bar once the late night snack emerged.  However, the bridal party was given a sneak preview to them while they got ready – in IU Red of course!

Wedding Favors

Grace and Graham spent the morning writing letters to one another.  I love when couples do this, they are always so emotional, heartfelt and real. Wedding Day Love Letter

Grace then spent time with her girls and dressed in her beautiful shoes and elegant Monique Lhuillier gown.  The details of this gown perfectly matched her skin tone, hair and stunning engagement ring.

Bridal Details

The bridal party was then ready to depart for an afternoon around the Circle City for photographs.  They joyfully spent the day taking pictures, sharing stories and catching up.  It had been just over a year since graduation, so Grace and Graham’s wedding was truly a Hoosier Homecoming!

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The details for this wedding were in the color palette.  The flowers were magnificent.  At the ceremony, through the altar piece, and the bridal party flowers, the guests got a hint of what was to come at the reception.  Not only were the colors vibrant and rich, but the choice of flowers daring and unique. (remember, no red roses for this bride — apparently, Grace isn’t a friend of the TV show “The Bachelor” — or so I’ve been told….)  Instead, Grace received a cornucopia of floral including dahlia, orchids, anemones, berries, roses, coxcomb and even kale in her flowers.  They were rich, opulent and textural!

Fall Bridal Party Flowers

This shows the depth of color in JUST Grace’s bouquet!  Wow – what a lucky girl — no red roses for this bride!

Fall Bridal Bouquet Close Up

The ballroom for the JW was lit in a golden almost haunting glow.  Specialty lighting effects created an amber and pink aura that immediately drew the guests deep into the large ballroom. Shadows across the linens in various shades of orange, reds and pink created a warm autumn sunset for the guests as the entered the room for dinner.

JW Marriott Indianapolis

 

Guests took several minutes to be seated as they meandered the space taking in the details that lay before them.  Long royal tables flanked the  dancefloor, while intimate square and round tables mixed together in the space to create smaller eating groupings.  The large tables had massive centerpieces dripping with candles, creating height and impact in the large ballroom, while the round tables had lush, low centerpieces perfect for conversation.

Large fall centerpieces

 Fall Wedding Detail FlowersFall Wedding Details

The room was very warm, rich and welcoming.  It was more than Debbie and Grace could have imagined. It was a homecoming!

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The ballroom was filled with family, friends and alumni and the Indiana traditions didn’t end with the color palette. Grace and Graham surprised their guests with a late night snack of Mother Bear’s Pizza, a groom’s cake (red velvet of course!) along with premiering the red cups at this time.  The bar tenders also changed into IU T-shirts for the rest of the evening.  This, along with the band, Rod Tuffcurls and the Benchpress, (a huge Bloomington staple) were perfect for this crowd. Following the band, they had a DJ to ensure the party went late into the evening!  There was no stopping this fun dancing crowd!  The dance floor was just as packed at midnight as it was at 9:30.

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It was an evening that was the perfect mix of formality and frivolity. In one evening we heard every genre of music from Pachebel’s Canon to Disney Frozen’s “Let it Go”!

first dance and toast

Grace and Graham wanted a wedding celebration that was truly a youthful, fun and energetic “party” while her parents wanted the formality and regal feeling befitting of a wedding.  Together this was achieved.  It was truly a “homecoming” – and isn’t that what the fall is all about?

I thoroughly adored my time with these families.  They are gracious, kind and welcoming,  I was honored to work with them, and more honored to call them now, my lifelong friends.

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For Grace and Graham I wish a lifetime of happiness and love – and remember on behalf of your & family,  “we’re all for you” 😉

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Merci Beaucoup:  to Conforti Photography for the above images (and IndyVisual for the wide room shot).  Also to: A Classic Party Rental, Bella’s Bridesmaids, Classic Cakes, Empty Vase, Indiana Landmarks Center, JW Marriott, LGi Linens, Markey’s AV, Mike Donaldson, Pink Poppy Ink, Rod Tuffcurls and the Benchpress

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Wedding Highlight – Abby and Matt

October 15th, 2014 monamieevents Real Weddings, Uncategorized 1 Comment

Abby and Matt - veil

Abby and Matt, along with their families, are such warm and gracious people!  They wanted their day to be filled with beautiful flowers, family tradition and great food — they had it all! When Matt proposed Abby’s parents immediately took them to Meridian Hills Country Club for a glass of celebratory champagne.  The Club has long held a place of family tradition and celebration, so hosting the wedding reception there seemed natural.  It was the perfect location for their early fall wedding.

Central Library Wedding Ceremony

Their ceremony location was hosted in the stunning architectural jewel, the Simon Reading Room of the Central Library.  This magnificent marble space with sweeping ceiling was the perfect location to host their unique ceremony.  Abby and Matt needed to intertwine a Jewish and Christian ceremony and this space was the ideal setting for their service.  While Abby wanted to have a stately Chuppah for her ceremony, she didn’t want to stand on the traditional right side, while she did want to have a Ketuba signing before the ceremony, she also wanted to have both a Minister and a Rabbi preside over the ceremony.  Selecting these officiants was an enjoyable process, because both the Rabbi and Reverend were both very excited to weave the religions together to create a beautiful and blended service for the two families joining as one.

Library Wedding Ceremony

Following the early evening ceremony, the reception began at Meridian Hills with cocktails on the veranda as the bridal party enjoyed photos on the beautiful greens.  After the winter we had, there isn’t a bride, photographer or wedding planner this year that has complained about this year’s weather and Abby was no different.  The photos she and Matt were able to to capture on the course were delightful!  The way the breeze captured her veil was picture perfect!  (top photo)

Abby and Matt Meridian Hills Country ClubMeridian Hills Country Club

Once guests were inside the ballroom, Abby and her mother, Lorna, wanted them to have a sense of traditional luxury.  Tones of white, cream, champagne and gold surrounded family and friends.  Rich cappuccino linens and decadent gold china helped the candlelit ballroom have a warm and welcoming ambiance. Lush white floral, chosen by Matt, because of his horticulture background, almost stole the show.

 

Full White Ballroom

Each course of the divine menu was artfully served on elaborate gold china.  Admittedly, following their menu tasting, I was really looking forward to this wedding night – the day of, it was served to perfection!  Yum!

Reception details

Dancing included the traditional Horah to honor Abby’s family,  but every guest was in on the action!  Ultimately there were 3 circles of guests to ensure there was enough room for everyone to participate.  Abby had cutting of the Challah by her grandfather along with having Matt’s dad say a blessing at the start of the meal.  At the ceremony both families signed the traditional marriage contract, the Ketuba, and both the Rabbi and minister stood under the Chuppah, but she stood on the left vs standing on the right.  It was beautiful to see how she wove  both religions into the day.

Jewish Wedding Traditions

I looked at Abby’s classic and elegant gown and thought to myself how timeless and regal show looked.  The lace detailing was so stunning!  Even when she laughed, she was flawless  – and that back – WOW!

Lace detail wedding dress

 

Marriage is about a lifetime together and coming together as one family.  I think Abby and Matt, along with their families, have started that beautifully!  They were such a delight to work with and I really enjoyed seeing their gracious spirit, their warm generosity and their loving way.  Watching how they blending their religions for the ceremony really is a testament to the flexibility and compromise that is required in a marriage.  It was a beautiful celebration – and will be the start of a beautiful marriage!

Family Photo

 

Mazel Tov Abby and Matt!

 

Flutter Fetti Streamers

Meci Beaucoup:  to Jennifer Driscoll Photography for all of the above images.  Also to; A Classic Party Rental, Central Library, Evans AV, Events by Design Paperie,  Jim Cerone, LaDolce Salon, LGi Linens, Marie Gabriel Couture Salon, Meridian Hills Country Club, McNamara Flowers, TLW Entertainment (Cathy Morris) Rev Tod Iseminger & Rabbi Weiss

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Wedding Highlight – Lauren and Tom

July 10th, 2014 monamieevents Real Weddings, Uncategorized 2 Comments

Lauren and Tom wanted their summer wedding to have a French provincial warmth to their farm wedding, and undoubtedly they achieved this. They have impeccable taste and it shows in every detail; whether it be the clothes they wear, the stores where they shop, or the vacations they take – naturally their wedding was going to be rich in detail, charm and beauty. Just like the two of them.

Lauren and Tom

After meeting at Yale during a freshmen picnic for athletes, the two friends really began dating after graduation in New York when they were on the same co-ed volleyball team. Tall, athletic, gorgeous and brilliant, this dynamic duo has everything going for them in the most energizing city in the world – so when a country wedding in Indiana was on their radar, I’m sure many of their friends questioned the tiny town of Franklin, Indiana for their impending nuptials. Until they saw photos of the picturesque Rockwell-like farm.

Lauren and Tom Photos

Lauren’s maternal grandparents played hosts to this stunning affair at their home, Fisher Farm. Cultivating their 60 acre farm over the course of the last 8 months became a full-time job for Barbara and Claude lovingly known as Mimi and Papa by the bridal couple, (and by the end of the night, every guest.) Whether it include putting up a fence around a small pond to ensure guest safety, or planting hundreds of annual beds to make sure everything the eye could see was in impeccable shape, Mimi, Papa, and the bride’s mom, Cindi worked tirelessly. The 150 year old farm has seen many changes in the 6 generations who have hosted family events there, but none quite as spectacular as the wedding for 250 guests Lauren and Tom hosted.

Fisher Farm overhead Photo

Guests arrived to the farm and were greeted immediately by Mimi and Papa with a refreshing glass of Mimi’s lemonade. The lemonade was displayed on a restored John Deere tractor style wagon filled with floral buckets. Guests helped themselves to the refreshing drink commenting on the “secret” recipe.

Lemonade Stand

Lauren envisioned her ceremony in the tree grove surrounded by walnut trees allowing shade from the summer sun. Having a meandering aisle gave the slender bride an angelic walk as she and her 9 bridesmaids in variegated shades of blue cascaded toward the altar. The altar space was created with white organza and lace fabric flowing from a branch to the ground creating a steeple-like setting. This ethereal space was perfect for the magical ceremony.

Bridemaids Blue Tones

The ceremony, officiated by Lauren’s brother-in-law, told the history of the farm and the couple to the guests. This 150 year journey allowed guests to relax in the summer breeze while sipping glasses of Mimi’s lemonade and savor in the sweet tenderness of the moment. The ceremony included acoustic guitar music which ranged from Broadway classics to pop favorites which engaged the guests. To their delight, the programs for the ceremony were parchment bags containing pink and blush rose petals to be tossed at the newlyweds as they recessed back down the meandering aisle.

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Following the ceremony the guests were able to see their first glimpse of the farmhouse and 100 year old red barn. Surrounded by beautifully cultivated gardens, the home seemed to relish in its role as the focal point of the wedding festivities. Crisp navy linens served as a stunning neutral canvas for the blush, pink and ivory florals which overflowed throughout the cocktail hour. Rustic touches included reclaimed barn wood painted with directional arrows to destinations the couple had traveled to over the years. During the cocktail hour guests reconnected (and recharged courtesy of phone charging stations) before heading into the large pasture which hosted the large dining tent.

Navy wedding cocktail hour

The dining tent filled the large pasture and welcomed guests to the 60 acre back area of the property. The focal point of the back yard is a 100 year old red barn along with 2 smaller red barns, one of which was the original blacksmith shop for the town. Guests gasped at the sheer beauty and Americana feel. Surrounding the tent were vignettes of seating areas, family photos on chicken-wire screens and historic wagons filled with quilts, flower buckets and watering cans. A postcard station was even set up as their guestbook. (The postcard was of an original painting commissioned of the barn)

Fern wedding tent

 

Inside the large sweeping tent guests marveled at the beauty and grandeur of the space. The florist ensured the line between indoors and out was lost. Large birch trees and ferns filled the space. The use of ferns dominated the overall tablescape in large part because of Lauren’s wedding dress. The Monique Lhuillier wedding gown included intricate embroidery on the bodice of ferns so Lauren wanted to include the use of fern throughout the wedding planning. (She did on the invitation stamps, ceremony aisle treatment and dining tent) In the tent the oversized ferns looked spectacular because of their large scale. The ferns were placed on tall stands to bring height to the tables and individual stems were tied lovingly with twine into the menus. The back of the navy menus contained the history of Fisher Farm (written by Mimi) so guests would know more about the 6 generations that had passed through the beautiful landscape where they were about to dine. Flowers were abundant throughout the space. Whether they poured from small wooden crates, baskets or mercury glass vases, they looked soft, refined and had a very French Provincial warmth. The interesting mix of containers, ferns and French ticking stripped napkins completed this look.

French Ticking Wedding

Dinner infused a bit of the French inspiration as well. One of Lauren and Tom’s favorite dates was a picnic at Versailles. Here they enjoyed cheeses, meats and olives together as a couple. When guests first entered the tent, we wanted to emulate that magical date and serve that same antipasto charcuterie course the dinner menu. Additional courses included a classic “Michigan Salad” to honor the bride’s home state. Dinner was a braised short rib with mascarpone polenta and the dessert was a beautiful and show topping 5 tier cake. The cake was a stunning confection of ruffles, gum paste flowers and lace detail in tones of blush, pinks and ivory.

Ivory and Blush Wedding Cake

Sunset fell over the countryside and the 12 piece band swelled allowing guests to dance the night away. Additional desserts and snacks were brought out throughout the evening including a make your own sundaes with a “nitro” station used to make the ice cream. Guests loved the fun interactive display while sitting on the swing or on lounge furniture surrounding the tent. Many guests took this time to explore the blacksmith shop, the barn and peruse the vignettes of historic quilts, carriages and photographs Lauren and her mom had placed around the grounds.

Farm Wedding DetailsTented wedding Farm Tented Wedding Sunset

The family did have one last surprise in store for their guests though,  Lauren’s brother always wanted a fireworks show on the farm — she made sure he got one – to the delight of the guests (and the neighbors!)

barn wedding fireworks

Congratulations Lauren and Tom – #TommyLolo!  It was such an honor helping you plan your wedding!  Thank you for allowing me to be part of your families over the last several months!  You are all stunning, inside and out! xoxo

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Merci Beaucoup to Jennifer Driscoll Photography for the above images and to:  A Classic Party Rentals, Antique Limo, Circle City Pyro, Classic Cakes, Elite Management,  Empty Vase,  Evans Audio Visual / Wow Factors,  IndyVisual (below image),  JW Salon, Makeup by Sparkle,   Pink Poppy Ink, Stephanie Carignan, Sunny Lawns Farms, Thomas Caterers of Distinction

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Wedding Highlight – Shelby and Brian

May 29th, 2014 monamieevents Real Weddings, Uncategorized No comments

Shelby and Brian are two people you meet and you know will be your friends for life.  They are warm, engaging, smart and funny.  So are their families.  Shelby’s mom has a saying,
“Beauty is as beauty does.”  Her entire family is beautiful – inside and out.  Her new son-in-law is as well — and frankly, so are his amazing parents.  They hosted the wedding of Brian and Shelby without a second of hesitation at their home and are among the most hospitable people I have ever met!

Their hideaway in Nashville, Indiana is called Serenity Lake Lodge.  Serenity says it all.

Barn Wedding Serenity Lake Lodge

The rolling hills of Brown County welcomed the guests for Shelby and Brian’s spring wedding with their lush green trees.  At the top of the hill stood the stately “barn” lovingly designed by Brian’s father, Gary to host their guests.  Brian and Shelby wanted a warm, rustic and intimate celebration filled with family and laughter and they achieved it all!

Bride and Groom Barn Wedding

Shelby looked stunning and wore a really beautiful hairpiece that her sisters had each worn.  I hope her darling niece will continue the tradition another generation.   Brian in his Navy suit and his ever present glass of Scotch looked stately and regal.

Bride and Groom Navy Wedding Barn Wedding

The families greeted their guests before the ceremony on the patio of the barn and the bocce court which for the evening was filled with chairs and seating covered in lighting to allow guests an amazing view of the countryside. Brian’s mom beloved “Marie Antoinette” – a 200 year old French statue brought over from Europe was even dolled up for the occasion.

Navy Wedding Rust Barn Wedding Details

Guests were able to get their first glimpse of the barn for the ceremony were in awe of the size and grandeur of the handsome lodge.  Strong and rustic, yet refined and romantic, the lodge was a perfect host for the nuptials.

Barn Wedding Ceremony

Brian’s proposal was at the courthouse in Brown County because he wanted a location that could “stand the test of time.”  Admittedly, I think the location for their ceremony does exactly the same!

Rustic Barn Wedding Ceremony

Following the ceremony guests enjoyed a family style meal on long farm tables with eclectic stoneware and cozy lap blankets to warm up the spring evening.  The long tablescapes were nestled with burlap table runners filled with moss which overflowed with floral.  Each guest had intimate take home bouquets of flowers including peony, ranunculus, thistle,  roses and hydrangea. These darling florals were tucked under tall floral which gave height to the crisp white tent.

Rustic Wedding Tablescape

 

View rustic wedding navy wedding floral details

As guests finished dinner, they entered the barn once again for the remainder of the celebration.  Here the evening finished with (TWO) surprise wedding cakes for Shelby, toasts and dancing!

The barn had been transformed to its traditional state.  The barn is normally a lovely lodge filled with furniture, art, two (I sense a theme here) grand pianos and is  a lush space for family and friends to gather.

Rustic barn Wedding Lodge

View More: http://jessicastrickland.pass.us/shelbybrian

I loved watching evening fall over the barn.  As the sun set, the barn seemed to radiate a warm glow – one that matched the mood. The evening was filled with a spirit of gracious hospitality and bounty.  Everywhere late night snacks were available, wine was offered, and even breakfast breads were lovingly prepared for the next morning and placed in cars by the valet staff.  Guests had little doubt this was a family affair and you were a guests at someone’s home.

barn wedding light up for evening

It truly was an honor to help these two families create this celebration for their guests.  They are warm, caring and kind people who wanted to welcome their friends to this wonderful evening.  I’m thrilled I can now also call them all friends!

Bride and Groom Navy Wedding Peony Bouquet

(to see more photos of this really beautiful couple – living up to Shelby’s mom’s motto – click here: Shelby and Brian’s Nashville Wedding  for their story.)

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Merci Beaucoup: Ace Party Rental, Bella’s Blooms, Classic Cakes, Elite Management , IndyVisual, Jessica Strickland Photography, Hoaglin Catering, Marie Gabriel Couture, Splendor, Wow Factors

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Imagine That!

October 14th, 2013 monamieevents Uncategorized No comments

inspirational movie to dance

My Disney background has helped shape my entire career – from bringing more than just a little pixie dust into the lives of each client, to ensuring each event has her own Fairy Godmother.  I want to make sure every event has an element of magic, imagination and fun.  Imagination is where is all starts!

I love seeing how clients bring their own personalities into a wedding – so let’s talk about how we can do that.  (and… we won’t use the P word:   Piterest.  😉  Couples often turn to Pinterest for ideas for their wedding ceremony and reception then bring me, their planner, or eventually to their florist oodles of pretty images and say “isn’t this unique?  I just love it, I want it for my wedding too!” (didn’t that just negate the meaning of the word unique?)

I gently broach the topic by guiding my clients that if they saw it on Pinterest, perhaps their bridesmaids (who are also of the marrying age) and their guests may have seen it too. The last thing she would want at her wedding is for a guest to say “I saw this on Pinterest.” We would want them to say “What a lovely and unique element” or “that is soooo them!”  So I tell my client “Let’s put our own spin on things and truly make it unique.”  Instead, I have encouraged my clients to (GASP) not look at Pinterest at this phase of the wedding!  Let’s use our imaginations and come up with other ideas to make your wedding your wedding.

1: Be a filmstar:  If you’ve seen it in the movies, then do it!  The photo above as in my mind’s eye for years!  It took the right client, the right venue and the moment to put it all together.  However it’s not like this was the only event that could be inspired by film.  Gatsby weddings have been popular for years, and are coming on strong again this season.

2:  Go on a date:  Think about your favorite locations to go on dates.  Now, have your guests do the same, join you on a date!  If you love going to going out for sushi, have a sushi station during cocktails.  If you met at a coffee shop, by all means, have that coffee as part of the festivities!  If you enjoyed tailgating in college together where you first met, consider having a late night snacks with a tailgate flair including cornhole. In your lounge area set up your alma mater’s game on for the guys in the room to enjoy.  Last weekend the bride and groom were just as enthralled with the Irish’s upset win over Arizona as her guests.  Kristen and her pom squad teammates even performed at halftime on the dancefloor!

 

coffee break

3: Stamp their passport:  Don’t be afraid to tempt your guests’ taste buds with your culinary adventures. If you and your fiancé have traveled, share these experiences with your guests.   Consider making your menu about your travels.  Perhaps you have traveled to great locations in our country or internationally and you remember specific dishes that you want to share with your friends and family.  Do it! They will love trying new things that mean something to you.  Printing your menu inspiration on the menu card with an explanation will be something they will enjoy and be excited to try.

YUM

4: Red Carpet Runway: Look at fashion magazines first.  I know, I know, brides want to grab that wedding magazine first when they have that engagement ring slipped on their left hand.  Grab your favorite fashion magazine and look there for color and style inspiration.  Your wedding style should reflect your personal style. Remember that! One of the most show stopping gowns I’ve ever seen was actually right out of the pages of a fashion magazine because she refused to look “’bridal” but rather “red carpet.” She wanted to look “Bam!”  Boy did she!  To this day, it’s the gown more people compliment, because it was so sleek, stylish and stunning.  (Admittedly, it’s also the gown most of my clients want to know where to go to in Chicago to buy something similar.)

Hillary Hair

5:  It’s what’s inside (your home)  that counts:  Do you have a favorite couch or piece of furniture that could be part of the seating for the head table, cocktail seating or lounge?  Is there a vase that has special meaning the florist can incorporate?  Is there something you remember from your childhood that would bring back a flood of memories for another generation because you surprised your parents (or grandparents) by using it in the ceremony or on your head table?  I’ve had clients use everything from the family’s rug for the wedding ceremony altar space, to a sentimental vase for the altar flowers to a pocket watch.  One bride used her mom’s fur stole and gloves.  Many of these were kept a surprise until wedding day.  It was wonderful seeing the reaction from the family members when they realized these pieces were lovingly used in the ceremony by the couple.  Look at what is right within your own home, your own yard or your own family history to create a special memory for your family.

Mom's memories

 

Regardless of your imagination inspiration, choose something that truly is unique, something that speaks to you as a couple and as a newly forming family.  Make sure it resonates with your guests and doesn’t just follow the latest trends on websites and social media. After all, you want the day to be about the two of you, your families and your new life together and not about what “unique” idea you saw and likely, what everyone else did too.  You want it to be a reflection of you, your lives and your story that is about to unfold in front of those you love.

 

Merci beaucoup to the following photographers for taking these photos for me of my clients and weddings:  (in order of appearance) IndyVisual, Nathaniel Edmunds Photography, IndyVisual, Kevin Swan Photography

 

Mon Amie Events, Inc is an Indianapolis based full service  luxury wedding and event planner specializing in event planning, wedding planning and event design.

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Wedding Highlight – Andrea & Patrick

August 1st, 2013 monamieevents Real Weddings, Uncategorized 1 Comment

Perfect Dance

Every once in a while a couple just touches your soul.  In 14 years of planning weddings I’ve been lucky enough to have this happen to me several times throughout the year.  It’s one of the reasons I am so discerning about the number of clients I take a year, and one of the reasons I interview each client so thoroughly as much as they interview me.  My only regret with Andrea and Patrick — time.  Patrick proposed to Andrea May 18th. Yes, this year on May 18th.  The entire wedding was planned in 8 weeks.  Therefore my only regret isn’t the lack of time we had to plan the wedding, because we had enough, but rather my lack of time I got to spend with such extraordinary people.

Andrea and Patrick travel quite a bit for their career, often oversees, and due to this hectic schedule, they no longer wanted to wait to be married.  The time was now, so, the wedding was now.  By no means does this mean that our relationships, our conversations, nor our friendship will be over.  (A WISE former client once told me on her wedding day “your work here may be done, but our friendship has just begun.” with Andrea, I feel the same way.)  She and Patrick are warm, engaging, welcoming, witty and smart.  Entirely my kind of people!

 

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Originally from Colombia, Andrea is funny, stylish and full of just the right amount of spice and flair one would expect from any South American woman.  Patrick, the debonair Frenchman, is sophisticated, welcoming, warm and charming.  I met them two days after Patrick proposed and we began working on their wedding which would infuse their experiences and cultures into an amazing sensory experience for the guests.  Finding the perfect venue took less than a week (the Market Table restaurant) located in The Alexander.

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The ceremony would take place outside in their garden while guests sipped on specialty cocktails (made with Indiana’s own Sage’s Simple Syrups) and found shade in deep red parasols.  The backdrop of the ceremony included their monogram, symbolic of their 2 worlds coming together.  Andrea carried a (stunning!!!) bouquet of peony, roses and callas which smelled divine, and I kept thinking to myself – HOW did Alan (from McNamara Florist) find such amazing peony in JULY!?!?  The bridesmaids bouquets were lovely hues of reds which looked amazing against their very very pale blue dresses.  At the end of the service  guests showered the couple in red petals which were lovingly presented in clear packages on each chair at the service.

Ceremony Recessional

The reception allowed guests to tempt their taste buds!  The tapas style menu allowed guests to sample options for several hours pursued the options as hors d’oeuvres, entrees, desserts and late night snacks were all presented in “small plate” style servings.  The menu ranged in cuisine from around the globe allowing guests to travel from country to country tasting the heritage and culture of this amazing couple.  If you’ve ever been to Epcot’s Food and Wine festival, that is a sampling of what this wedding menu was like.  Sinful, indulgent, delicious.. and it just kept coming… fur hours and hours and hours….and it was amazing! just when you thought it stopped, out came the late night snacks with the amazing truffle oil steak fries and sliders (and oh – but wait, I need to try another flavor of gelato!)  (how do you say food coma in French and Spanish!?!) 🙂

(The flower girl’s expression says it all!  priceless!)

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Wedding Menu Small Plates

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Even the  wedding cakes (both American and the traditional French pièce montée) reflected their cultural influence.  Patrick was so excited about this confection!  Due to humidity (and BOY was it HOT on this July night!) it was very very difficult to  find any bakery in Indiana willing to make this special request for him.  Thank you to Ilene from Classic Cakes for finding a way to create it.  (after striking out at over 1/2 a dozen other pastry shops unwilling to tackle the task.)  Patrick was so grateful he even spoke about it during his speech.  Merci Ilene!

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Naturally, no French wedding would be complete without a champagne toast, but this wedding included a Champagne Bar allowing guests to sample champagne vintages and infuse their beverage with juices, syrups and floral.

Simple Syrup

Throughout the night guests could be seen perusing the menu options while reading their program.  This program book (24 PAGE book!) lovingly translated in French and Spanish the ceremony’s vows and menus so guests who had traveled from France or Columbia never felt left out of the evening’s celebration.  It also included background behind some of Andrea and Patrick’s favorite pieces of The Alexander’s amazing art collection as curated by the Indianapolis Museum of Art and the significance of the A+P circle monogram.

Menu

The toasts were warm and charming!  Andrea actually surprised Patrick by saying a large portion of her speech in French for his family.  Everyone, from around the globe understands the language of love, and there is no doubt these two are meant for each other, and their families are elated for their happiness!

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Music played a major role in the celebration. The ceremony included a live trio, but during the reception, the salsa and Latin flair kicked in when Cathy Morris put together an ensemble for the dinner portion of the evening.  The DJ kept the crowd happy by infusing a European club sound while playing just enough Latin style to make sure both continents were on the dance floor all evening long!  When Andrea surprised her guests with her reception dress, the Shakira song was the perfect choice!  Guests enjoyed dancing under the chandeliers of Edison bulbs creating a starry and romantic glow to the entire evening!

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This sweet and tender moment was captured during their “second first dance” when Andrea came out in her reception dress.

Andrea and Patrick dancing

Among my favorite moments of the day include their first viewing — it was in the lobby of the hotel.  Exactly in the spot where Patrick first said to me “this is my style. This type of space.”  I knew right then The Alexander was the right location for them.  I’m thrilled with the service they received, the convenience for their guests and the flow of the entire process.  I’m also thrilled it was where he saw Andrea on their wedding day for the first time.  Perfect! They deserved that!

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Just as the invitation was printed in 3 languages, (BOY were those rsvps amazing fun to get back in the mail — an incredibly fun perk for me since they travel so often!)  all other paperie pieces had been throughout the day.  As guests departed they once again were surprised with a multinational gift.  The favors were a collection of sweets from around the globe. (I still don’t have the heart to nibble mine — but ohhh, it’s calling… though the amazing – and I mean AMAZING basket Andrea and Patrick created for me with treats from around the globe was devoured! – merci, gracias, thank you doesn’t say it enough!)

Favors

The entire evening had the perfect blend of food, family and fun,  Félicitations! ¡Felicitaciones! Congratulations Andrea and Patrick, it was an honor working with you and a pleasure getting to know you.   Wherever your travels take you, I know our friendship indeed has just begun!

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I love reading the photo comments from guests around the globe – including this one from a guest “qu’ils sont beaux 😉 plein de bonheur a tous les deux!”  – when looking at this image, I agree!

mejores deseos, te amo tanto! meilleurs voeux, aiment tous les deux! Best wishes, love you both!

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Merci Beaucoup:

Alexander, Blue House Bridal, Cathy Morris and Kristi Lee (TLW Entertainment), Classic Cakes, Evan’s Audio Visual,  IndyVisual, McNamara Florist , pomp&polish llc , Sage’s Simple Syrups , Splendor, Tyler Mason, Vrai Photography

 

visit http://monamieeventsinc.com/andreapatrick/ for more images and more details of Andrea and Patrick’s wedding day

UPDATE —

 

Enjoy their wedding video trailer!  Andrea+Patrick Video

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Mon Amie Events, Inc is a high end  Indianapolis  based event planner, luxury wedding planner, bridal consultant bar mitzvah planner, bat mitvah planner, event designer and wedding designer. Monica Richard, MBC

6915 Bretton Circle, Indianapolis, IN

 

 

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It’s All About Touch! Texture at Events.

March 27th, 2013 monamieevents Uncategorized No comments

We all know entering any special event an experience for the entire mind, body and soul.   It’s something for each of the 5 senses and one of my favorites for my clients to think about is the sense of touch!  Every client thinks about sight and sound, and quite obviously taste – but touch is of equal importance.  In many cases, it relates to the other senses.  If you touch something – it’s because the sense of sight made you wish to do so.  It’s about giving guests a full experience and a tactile experience is part of it.   Planning an event with the sense of touch is fun and easy!

Every element of the event adds texture – from the linens, to the chairs, to the paperie, to the floral!

Texture in an event

Texture adds interest to your guests’ experience.  It allows them to feel comfortable and relaxed.  Remember, any event is in actuality, for a brief moment in time, an extension of the host’s home.   That said, guests should feel relaxed, comfortable and at ease.  They shouldn’t feel like they’re in a china shop and afraid to touch things.

Here are a few ways you can easily add another layer of texture to your event.  Whether it be a luxurious wedding, a fun playful bar mitzvah, a sleek corporate event, or even a children’s birthday party – each event needs layers of texture.

Wedding guests are your family and friends and they should have the comforts of home.  Simple things like pillows and throws on lounge furniture go a long way to make guests want to cozy up in these intimate spaces.

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Menu cards, escort cards, programs and other paper pieces the day of the event add layers of texture to any event.  The type of paper, printing style and how they’re displayed all add texture to your special occasion.  Whether these pieces are whimsically displayed with the dessert station, or placed with precision at each place setting, each piece of paper adds a later of texture to the event in a personalized and unique way. These menu cards were printed paper adhered to thin pieces of wood and placed on heirloom linen napkins adding another dimension of texture as guests sat at the dinner table.

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Flip flops and rustic woven baskets of pashmina wraps for outdoor events ensure your guests are comfortable during dancing and cool or windy weather. These are a great idea as your guest favors  – so can easily serve dual purpose.

pashminas and flipflops

No one ever claimed all texture needs to be soft.  Metal also makes a great addition to any event, especially when going for a sleek club feeling.  Here these chic sculptures were around the room and the young attendees definitely didn’t have a “hands off approach” because the glistening metal sparkle attracted the kids to each unique sculpture.

Metal

The easiest way to add texture is the host’s attire.

This amazing wedding gown is a perfect example of texture being added to the event quietly and discreetly to the wedding.  Her floral (by L. Gene Huddleson – Detail+Design)  also adds another layer.

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Texture and the sense of touch are fun elements to add to an event.  Have fun talking with your wedding planning and event professionals about how you can add texture into your event.

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Merci Beaucoup to the photographers who have captured these photographs from Mon Amie Events, Inc events that have infused elements of texture over the years: (in order of appearance) Jennifer Driscoll Photographer, Megelaine Images, Hether Miles Photography (Menu Card by KB Design), Megelaine Images, Hosteler Photograhy (Decor by L. Gene Huddleson, Detail+Design), Amanda Wilcher Photography (bouquet by L. Gene Huddleson, Detail+Design)

 

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Pace Awards ~ The Envelope Please

March 13th, 2013 monamieevents Uncategorized No comments

 

The Indiana Chapter of  International Special Events Society (ISES)  held its annual award celebration last weekend.  The PACE awards (Professional Achievement in Creative Events) mission is to provide a prestigious event that honors and shares the work of industry professionals. The PACE awards aim to recognize professionals in the special event industry for all of the events they create, plan, manage, and execute during the year.

View More: http://brianmcguckin.passgallery.com/event/dL8C1139321

The awards honor industry professionals in categories ranging from videography and photography to corporate events and social events.  For many years we’ve been honored with nominations and awards  for our work and in 2013 we once again received this flattering accolade.  Jessie and Stefan’s wedding was a beautiful celebration and we are thrilled for them to have won the ISES Pace Awards for Best Wedding for their budget range.

View More: http://brianmcguckin.pass.us/2013paceawards

Stefan said all along the planning process he wanted to win the Best Wedding Award for his bride.  It was very exciting to accept this award honoring the couple.  They wanted to create something to unique and poignant for their guests.  To see the wedding film (from Northernlight Filmworks) from their day, please click here:

http://www.northernlightfilmworks.com/2013/02/stefan-and-jessie/

Details from their day included Jessie’s stunning altar, her two wedding gowns, a unique bouquet created entirely from sugar and the couple’s touching tribute to her late father.  Thank you to the entire wedding team for creating such a special day for such a special couple – Merci Beaucoup:  A Classic Party Rental , Cake Zen , Conrad Indianapolis , Evans Audio Visual, Jennifer Driscoll Photography, Jim Cerone DJ Entertainment, JW Salon,  Makeup by Sparkle , McNamara Florist , Northernlight Filmworks

 

Merci Beaucoup for the photographs used in this blog entry:

To photographers Brian McGuckin and Jennifer Driscoll

 

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Wedding Highlights – Jessie+Stefan

October 1st, 2012 monamieevents Real Weddings, Uncategorized No comments

Jessie+Stefan’s wedding day – here are the details that made this amazing couple’s wedding so special.

They are a very thoughtful couple – so kind, so welcoming and soooo in love!

(Jessie+Stefan will be featured on the website soon, with their complete love story and details, but until then, here’s a sneak peak into their photos and wedding celebration.)

 

 

My heartfelt gratitude goes to the entire vendor team ~ Merci Beaucoup:  A Classic Party Rental (the little things like chairpad color changes = world of difference!), Cake Zen (for the sugar flower bouquet and boutonniere we kept a secret until Jessie walked down the aisle — what a wonderful secret this was!), Conrad Indianapolis (your hospitality and culinary team are always second to none), Evans Audio Visual (the stage, the lighting, the setting – I am without words!), Events by Design (Paperie and kindness – thank you!), Jennifer Driscoll Photography (you capture a day and capture a moment eloquently and with friendship!), Jim Cerone DJ Entertainment )kept that dance floor packet all evening, and created one of the best moments of the evening – the very special parents’ dance) , JW Salon (what a bridal party – thank you for taking time with each girl to make them all look individual and special) , LGi Linens, Makeup by Sparkle (you as always, brought out the inner beauty on these stunning women) , McNamara Florist (my partner, my friend – this was a dream realized – thank you is hardly enough), Neighborhood Pizza Truck (yummmmmm) , Northernlight Filmworks (I can’t wait to see you version of the day with everyone – especially the moments film captures so uniquely) , TLW Entertainment (Cathy – the ceremony was so special because of your touches!)

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Update — 1/18/2013 – Jennifer Driscoll – the evening’s amazing photographer created her own blog for the wedding with her thoughts on the night.  Here’s her link to the images from the wedding!

http://photosbyjennifer.com/blog/2013/01/jessie-and-stefan-indianapolis-wedding/

 

Thank you for your kind words, Jennifer ~ it is always such a pleasure working with you!

 

I am an Indianapolis event planner, wedding planner, bridal consultant bar mitzvah planner, bat mitvah planner, event designer and wedding designer. Monica Richard, MBC

6915 Bretton Circle, Indianapolis, IN 46268 317-460-3726Before you plan your next event, please call!

 


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Bridal Beauty Is More Than Skin Deep

September 14th, 2012 monamieevents Uncategorized No comments

Bridal beauty goes far beyond the dress – and the ever important jewelry and the shoes – ohhh the shoes – it also includes bridal hair and makeup.

It’s important to think in advance about hair and makeup as part of your overall look If you color your hair regularly, make sure you you’ve talked with your salon months beforehand and gotten the schedule of your appointments.  Have an appointment with your stylist to practice your trial run and decide if cascading locks are for you or an up do are more your look.

  • Practice makes perfect.  Have fun with different looks for the makeup on your wedding day.  Perhaps for the wedding ceremony you have a more refined and classic look with one gown, then for the reception and your party dress, you kick things up a notch – including your makeup and hair!  I had brides have their entire style team re-do their hair when they changed clothes, while others either did it themselves, or just added accessories for a new look.

  • Go Big or Go Home. – By this I mean the lashes.  Please – get lashes!  You will love them!  In photos, you will never, ever, ever want to go back!

  • Look at your hands.  Everyone else will be!  Think about your manicure, will you go with a classic French manicure, a ballet slipper pink or a wonderful pop of color?  Some brides are choosing the (now famous) Michelle Obama acrylic polish which will last wedding day through the honeymoon without a chip.  I’ve been using it for the French Manicure (known to show chips more quickly) for about a year and been quite happy with the results.
  • Drink water and get your rest.  These sound simple enough I realize, but will make a world of difference in your overall appearance and health of your skin.  You will appreciate that radiant, timeless appearance.

  • Pamper yourself.  Get a massage and enjoy your final days as a Miss.  The rest of your life you are a Mrs. and will stand next to one another – however enjoy those quiet moments in the zen of the massage room knowing everything is under control and it’s going to be an amazing weekend!
  • Have a Moment of Gratitude.  Take a moment to say “Thank You” to the people who helped create the wedding you’re about to have.  Whether it be your families, bridal party or the wedding professionals who are your team.  You’ll find it may the most beautiful thing you’ve done and may make you feel prettiest of all.  I had a bride very recently who everyone kept saying was so beautiful.  In part because she was so grateful to everyone around her, my genuine response – “She is even more beautiful on the inside.”

Happy Honeymoon J+S. 🙂

 

 

 

 

Merci Beaucoup to the photographers and makeup artists and salons who week after week make my clients shine through: (in order of appearance) Scalini Photography (with Evan Todd Salon), Jessica Strickland Fine Art Photography (EyeMax Studio), Nathaniel Edmunds Photography (EyeMax Studio), Carpenter Photography & Design (Makeup by Sparkle & EyeMax Studio for Hair), Nathaniel Edmunds Photography (EyeMax Studio and Reeda Todd for Hair), Jennifer Driscoll Photography (Makeup by Sparkle and JW Salon for Hair)

I am an Indianapolis based and destination event planner, wedding planner, bridal consultant bar mitzvah planner, bat mitvah planner, event designer and wedding designer. Monica Richard, MBC

6915 Bretton Circle, Indianapolis, IN 46268 317-460-3726

 

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