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Parisian Inspired Afternoon Tea Wedding

Admittedly, I am completely obsessed with tea parties, so this Parisian inspired tea party wedding was for sure going to be one of my favorites (it just was).  But beyond my love of the really, really good theme, it’s a drop-dead gorgeous day that gives pretty an entirely new meaning.  Think vintage-esque styling meets one seriously stunning setting.  See it all captured by Fill In The Blank Weddings right here.

Colors
Seasons
Spring
Styles
Vintage

From Fill In The Blank Weddings… Mike and Marrisa are good friends of mine. Mike was actually one of my groomsmen when I got married in 2008. I was honored and humbled that they chose me to capture their very intimate family-centered wedding at Cammidge Heritage House. From the beginning of the day there was an electricity in the air as they both anticipated their wedding day. They had an incredible first look before we did photos and ceremony, and the joy and fun carried though out  the entire day. We had such a great time with the two of them and their families, and it’s a wedding we won’t soon forget.

From The Bride… The goal of our wedding was to ensure that the celebration of our union was both deeply meaningful and also a fun and relaxed time that we could share in with our closest friends and family. Both Michael and I share a love of tea, French pastries and nature walks at our local bird sanctuary. This set the theme of our avian and Parisian afternoon tea wedding.

Our guests arrived at the picturesque location of Cammidge House, a heritage home located inside beautiful, windswept Centennial Beach Park just outside of Vancouver. The park is situated near the Rifle Bird Sanctuary, a haven for a variety of local birds and is a nod to one of our favorite pastimes. Guests were greeted by blue sky, marshmallow clouds and dazzlingly sun, which is quite the departure from the typical “June-uary” we often experience before summer sizzles in.

Traditional, instrumental wedding songs floated on the summer breeze as guests left their name on one of two custom paintings created by the maid of honor (my very talented sister). Forgoing a program, the ceremony was communicated through a custom chalkboard which sat upon an heirloom chair of groom’s grandmother. Grandparents made an appearance through photos of their own wedding days, which was a meaningful touch. Guests were seated outside on the lawn looking toward the character home, with beach behind and a romantic, floral accented arbor in front.

Meanwhile, the bridesmaids and I dressed above in a room overlooking the site, which was a fun way to spy on all the guests and added to the anticipation. I wore a vintage mermaid-style dress in peach with a cream lace overlay. It was meant to be as it was the first dress I set eyes on and ended up being alteration free. I didn’t like the idea of a tone of jewelry, so I opted instead for two crystal headbands and a simple fingertip veil. My something borrowed were my earrings, which my sister wore to her own wedding the year prior. I’m fairly tall, so I had to forgo heels with my dress and instead chose vintage-inspired flats that were cute and functional. The bridesmaids all wore black high-low dresses accented with florals and pearl jewelry. The modernized vintage theme was capped off with cute and comfortable lace-cut wedges and a custom sash.

The groom and groomsmen greeted guests below as they were seated. The groom wore a cream suit with a golden vest, while the groomsmen donned black suits with golden vests for contrast. Once the ceremony started the contrasting color blocks of dark suited groomsmen and chic bridesmaids came into full effect as the light colors of our outfits popped. The ceremony was deeply reflective of the our spiritual beliefs and our commitment to one-another and our community of friends and family. The ceremony was performed by one of Michael’s best friends who came in from another province. Out wedding really was a community event, as our wedding coordinator was a family friend, as were our florist and cupcake and cake maker. Having such good friends involved so closely in our wedding made it so much more meaningful. This was also reflected in our song choices, which were partially sung by family friends, including the lyric version of “A Thousand Years” by Christina Perri, which I had walked down the aisle earlier to an instrumental version.

Following the ceremony, we had refreshments waiting for our guests while they enjoyed group photos. Following photos, guests were led to the marquee tent which was decorated to suit an avian and Parisian themed high tea. The majority of the décor was either items we owned or borrowed from friends and family or crafted ourselves. The first piece that inspired me to pursue our focus on birds were the sets of laser-cut birds. They were actually part of a window display at a high-end store that the I acquired when I asked if I could have them upon learning they would be thrown out otherwise. My sister and I spray-painted the majority of the gold to add a touch of Marie Antoinette elegance, as did the lush table overlays, golden birdcage centerpieces, and gold-rimmed china.

The food was reflective of a scrumptious afternoon tea, including mini-scones with raspberry jam and clotted cream as well as little amuse bouche and finger sandwiches. The sweet table was filled with all of the delicious desserts we adore from the French patisserie we frequent. In place of a traditional wedding cake, we incorporated a variety of delights including the French equivalent, a Piece Montee (aka Croquembouche), as well as a custom cutting cake. Guests also delighted in reversed lemon-meringue tarts, cupcakes, opera cake, chocolate mouse, a macron tower and more. We incorporated a longstanding tradition and handed out the cupcakes personally to all of our guests. Although everything looked picture perfect, complications can still arise. As mentioned, it was a brilliantly sunny day, and even with a gentle breeze and shade, it ended up melting the chocolate truffles within their glass apothecary jars. Thankfully we saw an opportunity rather than a disaster and utilized the fruit skewers to create a fondue.

The sweet treats and savory delectables were offset with custom teas made by the groom’s aunt. There was a lavender earl grey and a lemon roobis to pair. The tea theme continued with the favor as each guest received a custom lychee green tea based on our personalities. All teas were crafted by the groom’s aunt which again added to the community essence of our wedding. The tea and sweet-filled afternoon was capped off with story telling from guests, which also included the creation of a memory card for the bride and groom to keep.

Photography: Fill In The Blank Weddings | Floral Design: Sonia's Flowers | Wedding Dress: Bliss Bridal | Invitations: Minted | Shoes: Nine West | Catering: Culinary Blossoms | Catering: Faubourg Cafe | Catering: Faubourg Cafe | Groom's Attire: Black And Lee | Decor: Just Artifacts | Pastry: Faubourg Cafe | Rentals: Confetti Party Rentals | Venue: Cammidge House

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Watercolor Garden Wedding Inspiration

There’s pretty much no better place for wedding love to bloom than a sprawling garden, which is why this stylized shoot at Pathway to Perennials has all of us here swooning. Of course, the impeccable taste and stylings of Phoebe Lo Events and Rhythm Photography help elevate the scene to the grandeur below. Like what you see? Then make sure to take a peek at the full gallery for more lush loveliness.


Colors
Seasons
Spring
Settings
Garden

From Phoebe Lo EventsEscaping the bustling city of Toronto to the northern regions of the metropolis, one would venture through scenic landscapes that became the drawing forces of many prominent paintings that we now enjoy.

Brushed behind the rolling pastures and concealed by cast iron gates lies a secret little garden known as Pathways to Perennials. The luscious estate was carefully crafted by a pair of gardeners that dedicated the landscapes to their newborn child. Developed over the course of a decade, the gardeners envisioned that Pathways to Perennials would be the grounds to which their daughter and her loved one would lovingly cast the oath of marriage upon each other.

The meandering pathways signify the course of a lifetime’s journey, and one would find the hidden treasures among this delicate route, whether it be a bunch of French garden roses or a gazebo with welcoming breezes and a seat for two.

This styled wedding photo shoot plays with a classic European motif that is subtly captured through the accents of landscape painting and watercolours. The concept of romance is drawn upon the unity of these key elements and positioned upon the lush backdrop that embodies the perfect solution of vintage and elegance.

The colour palette of this photo shoot features the sweet hues of mint green that is juxtaposed by pale peach, and lightly tinted by plush gold details.

The bride dons a floor length Alfred Sung gown crafted with French lace and crystal beading. The sweetheart table setting showcases an arrangement of century old Queen Anne porcelain dinnerware paired with Cellini Romanesque golden cutlery. A garden terrarium plays the role of a confetti station, which is composed of found colour pencil studs contained in antique medicine bottles. Garden roses, peonies, berries and greens embrace the floral centrepiece. Perched against its floral counterpart is the hand painted watering can that deposits varying paintbrushes at the disposal of the couple for spontaneous renderings upon the canvas table linens.

The painter’s lounge allowed for a creatively exquisite couple’s retreat graced by hand dyed pillows, sweet aperitifs, and a vibrant palette of petite hors d’oeuvres. Billowing away under the uncanny cluster of wooden poles exists the sweets table blooming with decadent desserts intended to charm with luxurious nodes of floral and pastels.

Although the gardeners’ daughter has embarked on a new journey of her own, the pathways and perennials remain as a symbol of the love stories that once took place at these very gardens.

As our production team wisps away back to our individual cavities of the cityscape, we take away a special experience from this project venue. An experience that encapsulates an unparalleled level of love and partnership that we shall have the luxury to cherish for a long time coming.

Photography: Rhythm Photography / Event Planning And Design: Phoebe Lo Events / Event Venue: Pathways To Perennials / Vintage Rentals: Invitation To Tea / Hair And Makeup: Vicki Millar / Attire: Fairytale Wedding / Florals: Petals Markham / Desserts: Jacq Baked Goods / Videography: Givin Design / Stationery: Legacy Loft / Art Supplies: Woodbridge Art School /

Lord of the Rings Inspired Engagement Shoot

I’m going to be totally honest: I have never read the Lord of the Rings trilogy, nor have I seen the movies. But that hasn’t stopped me in the slightest from falling head over heels for this little gem of an e-session planned to perfection by WuLaLa Weddings & Events and captured beautifully by Sandy Tam Photography.  It’s an enchanted forest take on all things fantasy with some crazy gorgeous Lord of the Rings inspired details thrown in for good measure.  See it all here.

Colors
Seasons
Summer
Settings
Forest
Styles
Romance

From WuLaLa Weddings & Events… When Mei-Yan and Chris first met with Sandy, they shared with her their love for Lord of the Rings. They even dreamt of a Lord of the Rings themed wedding, but dismissed the idea because it would have been over their budget. With this in mind, when it came time to planning their engagement photo shoot, we decided to fulfill their dreams.

As homework, Sandy and I got together and watched all three Lord of the Rings movies. We took elements from the movie that encompassed romance and fantasy to create our interpretation of an enchanted forest. We wanted the shoot to carry a fantasy feel, something like Lord of the Rings, but not too literal. From the movie, we also borrowed a quote that makes my heart flutter each time I read it: “I would rather share one Lifetime with you than face all the Ages of this world alone.”

We knew Kortright Centre for Conservation would be a great location for our enchanted forest because of their lush greenery. We found the perfect spot with tall pine trees that stretched for more than a quarter mile. We could not have asked for a more prefect backdrop.

The shoot was designed to be fresh, romantic and earthy. The color palette for this shoot was based on the couple’s wedding colors: blush pink, gray and purple. Coquette Studios did a phenomenal job with the florals, creating a beautiful curtain of purple orchids and light purple alstroemeria that hung from the trees. A beautiful acrylic chandelier was brought in from J Company Designs, garnished with pink peonies, spray roses and spirea greensand asparagus fern, adding that touch of romance. To keep with the Lord of the Rings theme, without it being too literal with elves and hobbits, we added crystal potion bottles, old books and replica Lord of the Rings jewelry! I am in love with the Elven necklace that Arwen wore in the movie. Wearing a romantic flowing gown with long loosely curled locks decorated with a beautiful floral crown, Mei-Yan looked stunning next to her handsome beau, Chris, in a gray suit jacket and navy trousers.

From The Bride…When Chris and I started a relationship together, the thing that drew us closer was a similar love for anything fantasy and enchanted. One of our first dates was watching Lord of the Rings as a marathon (the extended edition, or course!). After getting lost in the world that J.R.R. Tolkien created, we realized we had something in common. We shared a desire to live life to the fullest by exploring the beautiful world we live in. The next 10 years we spent our time traveling, both locally and globally. We got to see so many breathtaking sceneries and fell in love with everything earth has to offer. Chris even proposed to me on the mountaintop of Lake Louise in Banff, Alberta. We were surrounded by blue skies and never-ending greenery. Our engagement was magical. We begun to dream about how we could incorporate that feeling of enchantment into every aspect of our lives… including our wedding.

Then we met photographer, Sandy Tam, who listened to our dreams and helped us make them a reality. She introduced us to a team of talented wedding specialists who all worked very hard to make some true magic happen. On the day of the engagement shoot, makeup artist, Fiona Man, began the preparations by applying shades upon shades of fairy-like shimmery eyeshadow. As I fastened the zipper on my gorgeous dress coordinated by wedding planner, Lisa Wu, I caught a glance of myself in the mirror. I never felt so beautiful before. I was led to the set of our engagement shoot and tears welled up in my eyes. This was the “enchanted elven forest” that we imagined all along – and more! White candles lit up the pathway in between trees, strings of pink and purple orchids seemed to hang down from the sky, and a suspended floral chandelier tied in all the elegance. Special added touches were Lord of the Rings props and replicated Lord of the Ring jewelry. We couldn’t believe that our vision had come to life. Now when we look at our stunning photos, we’re inspired to continue living life in a magical and beautiful way.

Photography: Sandy Tam Photography | Bride's Dress: Forever Love Wedding Design | Floral And Hair-piece: Coquette Studios | Make-up Artist: Fiona Man | Potion Bottles: Anthropologie | Venue: Kortright Centre For Conservation | Wedding Planner & Stylist: WuLaLa Weddings & Events