Born to Hand Jive Baby!

Each year the country club hosts a member appreciation party, and since Brenda, my fabulous co-worker, has come on board as the membership director, the party has gotten bigger and better every year. Between some of my ideas and her ability to execute, we took a lot of big ideas and made them a reality for this year’s party.

This year’s party was centered around the ’50s and ’60s and had lots of elements from the Grease movie, including Rydell High prom with a king and queen, a diner, a drive-in movie theater and snack shop.

The end result? A huge hit and some very happy members. Check it out!

dsc_0158Vintage cars flanked the front doors to set the tone right as guests entered the building.

dsc_0163We highly encouraged everyone to dress their part, and the staff definitely got into the fun with 100% participation!¬†You just can’t have a gymnasium without bleachers, right? Thanks to Joe Herzog and his crew and Wilson’s Fitness, we were able to make the ballroom feel more like a gym.

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Although not good-for-you food, we featured traditional diner selections: sliders, hot dogs, fries, chili and root beer floats.

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We even crowned a king and queen after members nominated and cast votes for the winners!
dsc_0184Those streamers? Yes, they took forever to put up! God bless prom committees who hang much more than we did!

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Almost all the guests danced the night away, including rocking out to the infamous hand jive! All the spectacular lighting was thanks to that dancing fool on the left ūüôā Thanks to SW Productions for all your help creating a great ambiance for the space.

 

And we rolled in real motorcycles to have on display thanks to Mid America Harley-Davidson. It’s not everyday you see this happening at my job!

So the moral of this post is there is never an idea too big to accommodate as long as you have a great crew helping you and some creative ideas!

 

A Change In Light Can Make Everything Right

Above image compliments of Catherine Rhodes Photography, lighting compliments of Exclusive Events. 

Lighting is everything. Am I right? Lighting effects photos, how good your makeup looks, the mood of a room, and it can transform any event space. Don’t believe me? Let’s take a look at a few events the incorporated a lighting professional into their vendor list.

A colored uplight can completely transform a space like you see in the photos below. The venue goes from a large, stark room with harsh lines to a warm and more dramatic feel.

                        BEFORE                                                            AFTER

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Photos and lighting compliments of SW Productions. 

Lighting can add cohesiveness to the space by using one of the accent colors to compliment the other decorations.

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Lighting compliments of Complete Wedding + Events. 

It can also be utilized to highlight an architectural details or draw attention to a particular piece.

11986469_813051125474827_5414944666708549998_nLighting compliments of Exclusive Events. 

Lighting can be used as the wow factor, especially outdoors on a patio or inside a tent like this photo below:

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Photo compliments of Lindsey Pantaleo and lighting compliments of Exclusive Events.

Or, it can add a little personalization to an event.

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Lighting compliments of SW Productions. 

Now this is a totally different type of lighting, but fireworks are never a bad idea! There’s nothing like a big bang to the end of a fabulous evening.

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Photo compliments of Silverbox Photographers and fireworks compliments of SW Productions. 

Regardless of how you use lighting at your event, it always has a huge impact that never disappoints. Even if it does take up more of your budget than you would like to, it usually adds enough style to an event that you can eliminate some decor from another area. That is if you need to squeeze it into your budget….totally worth the expense!

The Seasons of Weddings

It was quite a busy year of weddings in 2016, and I had the pleasure of attending weddings all 12 months of the year. For today’s post, I pulled some of my favorite weddings from this past year’s archives. Using the seasons as a guide, I wanted to share with you some snapshots of these weddings that so beautifully fit into the seasons:

Spring
Bride & Groom: Jill Elder & Josh Smith
Wedding Date: June 4, 2016…Ok, so I stretched this “spring” wedding. It really was at the beginning of summer, but with all the beautiful colored blooms, I couldn’t help but include this in the spring section because it’s a great inspiration for spring brides.
Ceremony Location: Columbia Country Club Event Lawn
Reception Venue: Columbia Country Club
Photos compliments of Silverbox

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The Pre-Wedding:
Jill and her bridesmaids were dressed in beautiful matching robes during their wedding preparations and started the day off with floral accents from the beginning!

 

 

jill-josh-2The Color Scheme:
Everywhere you looked were bright, beautiful flowers. From the ceremony archway to the reception tables, pops of purples, pinks, yellows, greens and oranges were all complimented with gold accents. The bridal party wore greys, whites and blacks, which allowed the flower colors to shine.

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The Dessert:
A five-tier cake had the spotlight as guests entered the ballroom for the reception, which of course was also dripping in flowers. Edith Hall worked her cake magic once again!

 

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The Sweet Touch:
Josh proposed to Jill while the two were on a camping trip. So, guests were given “S’more Lovin'” as their favors, which were individually packaged s’mores supplies.

 

jill-josh-7A Unique Detail:
One of my favorite details was incorporated into this wedding. TooRooster Artistry was at the reception live painting each and every detail of the celebration. If you haven’t checked out Cindy Scott’s work, definitely do! It’s entertaining for the guests, and a great memory for the couple to take home with them.

 

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The Wow Factor:
I know I’ve talked A LOT about these flowers, but Kent’s Floral Gallery really outdid themselves. The show stopper? This gorgeous archway that the couple stood under as they said their “I dos.”

 

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The Seasonal Touch:
With warmer weather and a large guest list, the couple utilized the country club’s veranda for outdoor seating in addition to the indoor seating.

 

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The Perfect Ending: 
This reaction. Doesn’t every groom want a bride who is this happy?

 

 

Summer:
Bride & Groom: Alex Weishaar & Zachary Kluesner
Wedding Date: June 25, 2016
Ceremony Location:¬†Church of St. Mary’s in Fulton, MO
Reception Venue: Sorenson Estates in Columbia, MO

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The Pre-Wedding:
Alex is a huge fan of monograms…ok, that’s an understatement. She LOVES monograms and was super excited to be able to change her monogram to her new last name. It did not surprise me one bit when the bridemaid’s gift were adorned with each girl’s monogram.

 

 

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The Color Scheme:
Keeping in tune with the naturalness of the outdoor reception, the wedding decor was full of ivories, creams, golds and forest greens.

 

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The Dessert:
A simple yet elegant three-tier white cake adorned with flowers coordinating with the bouquets and centerpieces. Plus, there was a nod to the groom with his own groom’s cake.

 

 

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The Sweet Touch:

Since the reception was outdoors and there was lots of dancing to be done, Alex and Zach offered their guests flip flops to be warn when the party got started.

 

 

13533086_10153833626035914_1982605932848900480_n 13537789_10153833625935914_4660732316999410563_nA Unique Detail:
If you live in Columbia, you are aware of the downtown staple: souvenir plastic cups. Because the couple met at Harpo’s where Alex used to work and manage, they served their guests drinks in personalized Harpo’s cups.

 

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The Wow Moment:
When Alex and her mom came down the aisle holding hands, I couldn’t help but tear up. it was evident how strong their relationship was and really represented them standing by each other’s sides through life’s endeavors.

 

 

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The Seasonal Touch:
It wouldn’t be a summer party without a game of bags! During cocktail hour, guests were able to socialize outdoors with a little friendly competition using this personalized game of bags.

 

 

 

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The Perfect Ending:
The bride and groom along with their guests danced the night way under the stars, moon and this gorgeous arrangement of Italian-style string lights designed by SW Productions.

 

 

Fall
Bride & Groom: Emily Milford & Tom Stevenson
Wedding Date: November 5, 2016
Ceremony Location: Mary Queen of Peace in Webster Groves, MO
Reception Venue: Forest Park Visitors Center in St. Louis, MO

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The Pre-Wedding:
The crisp, fall air and the early rising for the bridesmaids coupled so perfectly with the mismatched flannels worn during hair and makeup.

 

 

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The Color Scheme:
Red was the obvious bridesmaid dress choice for Emily’s love of the color, and rich dark and pastel florals created the perfect contrast for the fall festivities.

 

 

 

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The Dessert:
A classic beauty in white adorned with coordinating flowers, it was simple yet elegant just like this couple.

 

 

 

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The Sweet Touch:
Each of these bridesmaids and all of their mothers have been friends since these girls were in elementary school…talk about long-lasting friendships! The ceremony also took place at their elementary school.

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A Unique Detail:
Both Tom and Emily have a true love for beer. Tom works for Anheuser Busch, and Emily has an immense knowledge of craft beers. So instead of stuffy, posed photos, the couple decided to have the wedding party enjoy beers at Urban Chestnut Brewery during photo time for more candid photos.

 

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The Wow Moment:
Although my favorite moment of the night was when the groom swept Emily off her feet (literally) and spun her around during the first dance, we also were very appreciate of this firey sunset that was a gorgeous backdrop for the perfect day.

 

 

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The Seasonal Touch:
Guests were greeted by a table of small white pumpkins, which were not only great seasonal decor but also doubled as escort cards.

 

 

 

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The Perfect Ending:
Tom and Emily said goodbye to their guests as they exited through a (rather long) sparkler aisle lined with all of their guests. It was truly a magical part to the evening.

 

 

Winter
Bride & Groom: Carroline Kirtley & Michael Stoll
Wedding Date: December 17, 2016
Ceremony Location: Rocheport United Methodist Church in Rocheport, MO
Reception Venue: Columbia Country Club

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The Pre-Wedding:

A nasty ice storm the evening before made travel into Columbia a little crazy and changed the plans around for the rehearsal. But a little inclement weather cannot stop true friendship!

 

 

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The Color Scheme:
We saw lots of shades of red this year, and of course a winter wedding wouldn’t be complete without it! A mixture of burgundies and pinks popped from the flowers, and lots of wintry greenery was incorporated on the mantels, in the bouquets and as part of the centerpieces thanks to Addie Jane Originals.

 

 

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The Dessert:
A naked cake. Whimsical and perfectly fitting for this bride’s style.

 

 

 

 

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The Sweet Touch:
Although I wasn’t at the church to witness this precious moment, this photo of the bride and her flower girls is one of my favorites of the day!

 

 

 

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A Unique Detail:

Carroline enlisted the help of Courtney Canine with the rental company Pretty Little Things to add beautiful antiques to compliment the 1920s venue. My personal favorite was the pairing of a vintage table, an old window turned into a sign and and old mailbox used for the card box. Adorable!

 

 

15578487_1124212824358654_1220016279465755869_nThe Wow Moment: 
The best man’s speech was great! I wish I had a video of it, so I could share. I’ve seen lots and lots of speeches, and his was definitely up there as one of the best. He was witty, showed emotion but held it together and truly summed up the relationship between himself and the groom.

 

15542053_1124212697692000_828034969302906938_nA Seasonal Touch:
At each place setting was a thank you note from the bride and groom expressing their gratitude for all of their guests attending their big day. And laid right on top of that was a small piece of greenery. It was such a small detail but really tied everything in together.

 

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The Perfect Ending: 

Just after the bride and groom swayed to their first dance, a light sprinkling of fluffy snow began falling and made for one epic photo! Photography compliments of Catherine Rhodes Photography.

Size Up Your Space

When it comes to decorating for an event, there are a number of things you want to consider about your venue before choosing a color scheme and theme:

  1. Coloring of the space: Make sure the colors you select aren’t conflicting with the color palette of the room. It’s often common for hotels to have crazy carpeting selections, so maybe choose a softer color scheme to offset the loud print. Or, if the banquet chairs in a space are a particular shade, select complimenting colors instead of a color that is going to conflict with the chair color.
  2. Time of year: If it’s the middle of the hottest summer in history (like now), you want to stay away from a cozy and warm colors. Especially if it’s for a wedding, select a color pallet that is either classic or compliments the season. If you are drawn more toward bright and airy colors, choose a spring or summer date. If you’re drawn to darker more luscious colors, the fall or winter might be the best time for you.
  3. Size of the space: This is the one I try and focus on the most. Even if you have gorgeous centerpieces or a really creative mantel display, it’s going to look awfully silly if it’s proportionally a lot smaller or larger than the space.

So today, I wanted to focus on size and shapes of a room. Don’t work against your space; utilize height and unique architecture to accentuate the space. For example, one of my favorite parts about the ballroom and the country club is the domed ceilings. The photographers love it, and highlighting the space with uplighting and patterns draws your eye up to the elegant architecture:

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The lighting above was designed by SW Productions, who utilized the archway to add some texture to a retirement celebration.

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Or like this photo above captured by Lollipop Photography (now Pop Wedding Photography!). This couple added a fun splash of purple to enhance a neutral color scheme for an early spring wedding ceremony.

In spaces with such high ceilings like this, it’s also important to think about the shape and height of your decorations. If you have a lot of small items on the mantels and short centerpieces, the gap between the ceiling and your tables/mantels is going to feel much larger than it really is. Instead, alternate your centerpieces to draw the eye up.

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Photo compliments of Silverbox Photography. 

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Photo compliments of Moonshadow Studio. 

This ceremony below took place on the veranda, which already has a gorgeous, rich wood color and lots of architectural elements. So why not include those aspects into the decor and add some softer elements that incorporate the romantic feel of the wedding while adding some natural elements like the moss and flowers.

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And even if the space isn’t enclosed, for example with an outdoor venue, create a little more intimacy by making boundaries. In this photo below, the couple was wed outside, but the gorgeous altar design created an intimate space for the couple and the officiant.

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Photo compliments of Catherine Rhodes Photography. 

And don’t forget about empty spaces. Those are usually where the details are noticed the most! In the photo below, the couple filled some of the empty entryway with signage and a collection of candles and greenery. It was definitely noticed by guests!

Jacquelyn Bair & Connor Price Wedding

Photo compliments of Scott Patrick Myers Photography. 

 

And here’s one of my personal favorites! There is a small nook in the entry hallway at the club, so this DIY bride created a toasting station. Upon arrival, guests were asked to take a complimentary champagne Jell-O shot as a toast to the bride and groom (grape juice was also served for the kiddos). Cheers!¬†11825793_796964660416807_2740641235281109874_n