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Classic Mansion Wedding

Pair a foodie bride and her handsome beau with a fab team of vendors that includes Coral Pheasant Stationery + DesignBLUSH Floral Design and Jubilee Events (to name a few) and the results are this: a beyond breathtaking day that boasts classic details, beautiful colors and soooo much pretty captured by Binaryflips Photography, it will make your head swoon.  Join me in the gallery for more.     

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Fall
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Mansion

From the Bride… When Lev and I first started planning our wedding, we fell in love with the Wadsworth Mansion (near my hometown in CT) before we even saw it in person. We liked that there were multiple rooms for guests to explore, as if it was our own private retreat (albeit a very fancy one!), and the way the mansion was set off from the road and surrounded by trees and gardens.

Once we had decided on a location, it helped set the tone for everything else: classic, elegant and romantic. To complement the interior of the mansion, we settled on a color palette of dove gray, blush and cream—plus a touch of gold—that felt airy and light, but still muted enough for October. I was also inspired by Laduree and their gorgeous pastel packaging.

Lev and I agreed we wouldn’t spend a lot of money on gifts for the morning of the wedding, but we wanted to do something small. We were doing long-distance for most of the year leading up to the wedding, and for about 6 months of that, Lev had been recording little clips of himself along the way—and turned it into the sweetest video. I ended up giving him a vintage compass, since he is my biggest supporter and, cheesy as it may sound, the one who always helps me find my way.

Despite some early rain and gloom, the weather that day—which also happens to be my grandmother’s birthday—ended up being beautiful. The whole place was washed in this gorgeous golden light. Our ceremony was led by Mary Coburn on the lawn behind the mansion, and months later, I still receive compliments on the incredible job she did. She has an amazing way of getting to know you, capturing the spirit of a relationship and bringing people together.

Bouquets and arrangements contained lush blooms like garden roses, ranunculus and dahlias. For texture and a slightly vintage feel, we added dusty miller, silver brunia berries and gold-dusted scabiosia pods (a really lovely touch from Elizabeth of Blush Floral Design). We decorated our placecard table with vintage cake stands and compote dishes collected over time, plus loose and floating flowers, votive candles and ribbons.

I have a killer sweet tooth, so good dessert was a must! Later in the night, we re-purposed the cake stands for a display of cream puffs, oatmeal-maple whoopie pies, pumpkin cheesecake squares, mini pecan pies and macarons in blush and cream. Our wedding cake featured a single, whimsical sugar bloom that was gold in the middle with pale pink petals fading into ivory.

Our invitations incorporated two design elements—a wreath and a bow—and two patterns—lattice and damask—that were used throughout our reception. The wreath was used for our table numbers and programs, and an actual wreath was hung on the front door of the Wadsworth. There were pink bows on my shoes and bows tied to our seats at the table. Finally, the lattice print from the invites appeared our dessert labels, while the damask print appeared on our menus.

My bridesmaids wore soft and subdued shades of pink, cream and gray by Amsale and Donna Morgan. Everyone wore their hair at least partially down, which was sort of a spur-of-the-moment decision—but I loved the way the casual hair styles contrasted with the guys’ formal tuxedos and bow ties.

My dress was a ball gown by Liancarlo. I tried on an embarrassing amount of dresses until I fell in love with its delicate, crystal-studded bodice and flowing, ethereal skirt. My earrings were a gift from my grandmother, who was given them by my grandfather on my mom’s wedding day. My something borrowed was my grandfather’s wedding ring, and my something blue was a ring my mom gave me some 15 years ago that I’ve been wearing ever since. Both of these were tied to my bouquet.

A few other personal touches we added to the wedding were a guestbook filled with handmade envelopes in different patterns and colors for guests to leave us notes, a display of family pictures, and signature cocktails (a pear drink I make every winter, and a Brazilian coffee drink that satisfies Lev’s coffee addiction and relates to one of his favorite trips). At the end of the night, guests helped themselves to a Connecticut classic—Foxon Park White Birch Beer—and freshly-popped popcorn in two different flavors: salted butter and caramel cashew.

My best advice to brides is to enjoy the planning process as much as possible. Spend some time sifting through ideas and thinking about how you envision the day before you dive in—and then take it on little by little. And, make it your own. Everything doesn’t have to match perfectly. In fact, it will feel more organic if it doesn’t! Then, once the day arrives, let go of all those little details and focus instead on savoring every moment.

Photography: Binaryflips Photography | Floral Design: BLUSH Floral Design | Cake: Ana Parzych Cakes | Bridesmaid Dresses: Donna Morgan | Bridesmaid Dresses: Amsale | Catering: Gourmet Galley | Hair And Makeup: Naomi's Studio & Salon | Calligraphy: Graceline Calligraphy | Lighting: Rob Alberti | DJ: Rob Alberti | Officiant: Mary Coburn | Bride's Dress: Liancarlo | Bridesmaid Boutique: Bella Bridesmaid | Chandeliers/Draping: Ryan Designs | Coordination: Jubilee Events | Day-of Stationery: Coral Pheasant Stationery + Design | Macarons: Le Petit France | Makeup: D.d. Nickel | Mansion: Wadsworth Mansion | Musicians: Millenium Music | Rentals: La Tavola | Tent: CT Rental Center | Transportation: Premier Limousine | Tuxedos: Valentino Tailors

Amsale and Donna Morgan are members of our Look Book. For more information on how members are chosen, click here. Blush Floral Design Studio, Jubilee Events, Gourmet Galley Catering, La Tavola Fine Linen Rental, BINARYFLIPS PHOTOGRAPHY, Ryan Designs, LLC and Coral Pheasant Stationery + Design are members of our Little Black Book. Find out how members are chosen by visiting our FAQ page.
Blush Floral Design

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Glamorous Secret Garden Inspiration

Fact: when The Secret Garden and a talented team of vendors join forces, it’s downright magical.  Think the beauty stylings of Dana Bartone & Company, fab paper goods from Coral Pheasant and crazy gorgeous event design by A Polished Plan… all coming together in a day that seamlessly mixes vintage romance and rustic elegance all in one setting.  See it all captured by Greg Lewis right here.

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Summer
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Mansion

From A Polished Plan… The inspiration for the design of this styled photo shoot was the desire to put a modern twist on a ‘Secret Garden’ concept. The Wadsworth Mansion is a very popular wedding destination in Connecticut, but is not generally known for it’s outdoor event space, aside from the lawn area for ceremonies. Our design team was approached to create an inspirational photo shoot to highlight the beauty of the under utilized outdoor locations on the property.

We infused an abundance of earthy and natural elements that are normally found in a backyard garden setting with more formal and glamorous elements found in an upscale wedding or event. Rustic wood tones, earthy garden greenery, watering cans and shades of vintage patina copper were arranged side by side in the design with sophisticated and highly textured linens, bold yet romantic flowers in shades of raspberry and peach, and even a crystal chandelier al fresco.

The highlights of the tabletop design include vintage seed packets perched in amber sorbet bowls, ombre shades of green vintage flatware, luxurious textured linens reminiscent of garden florals, and copper chivari chairs. The floral design is simple in nature and highlight gorgeous late summer flowers grown from a local CT dahlia farm in bold color shades of pinks, peaches, and raspberry. All of the vintage containers for the centerpiece are in various patina shades of copper. Delicately strung above the table is a crystal chandelier hanging from grapevine rope.

Together with a vintage cocktail hour seating arrangment, an intimate ceremony set-up in a sunken rock garden, elegant and refined bridal fashions, and a gorgeous “naked” wedding cake, they create a beautiful story of a earthy garden party meets an upscale chic soiree.

Photographer: Greg Lewis Photography | Event Design: A Polished Plan | Floral Design: Stems Floral Design | Wedding Dress: Everthine Bridal Boutique | Wedding Cake: Taste By Spellbound | Stationery: Coral Pheasant | Bridesmaids Dresses: Everthine Bridal Boutique | Beauty: Dana Bartone & Company | Lighting Design: Social Decor | Limousine : Black Swan Limo | Linen Rental: La Tavola | Rentals: Party Rental Ltd. | Venue: Wadsworth Mansion | Vintage Rentals: Sassafras Vintage Rentals

Dana Bartone & Company, Coral Pheasant Stationery + Design and Everthine Bridal Boutique are members of our Little Black Book. Find out how members are chosen by visiting our FAQ page.
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Middletown Barn Wedding from Carla Ten Eyck

I’m going to try my hardest to not be Miss Bossy, but really, you simply must save some time today for the rest of this absolutely stunning wedding (right here in the gallery). Julie Morawski of Carla Ten Eyck has brought me to goosebumps with her beautiful images of this perfect day. The bride could not be more stunning (thank you Dana Bartone & Company), the groom’s happiness level is obviously at it’s peak, and the soiree seems to have been tied together with the prettiest of black and white striped bows.

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Summer
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Barn
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Romantic

From the lovely bride… So much of what made our wedding special was in the details.  From the quintessential New England ambiance that reflected our upbringings (I’m from Connecticut; Ryan grew up on Cape Cod) to the level of color coordination, I spent much of our year-long engagement obsessing over all the little things.  With the help of my parents, my husband, and many friends for the prep work, and then of course our amazing vendors, all of my ideas came together to truly bring the vision to life.  Looking back, I am so thankful for all the details and for our fantastic photographer Julie who made sure none of it will be forgotten!

When looking for venues, we knew we wanted something a bit untraditional that could be a blank canvas for all of my colorful ideas.  The Barns at Wesleyan Hills ended up being the perfect venue for us – minutes from my childhood home, surrounded by beautiful grounds, and full of potential.  Despite the reception being held in a barn, I did not want the event to feel overly rustic.  No mason jars, no twine, and certainly no burlap.  Instead, I opted for bold black-and-white accents that helped strengthen and modernize the otherwise vintage space.  I think the juxtaposition of elegant with rustic turned out so beautiful and also reflected our personal styles well.   The peachy sunset colors offset by the stark contrast of blacks and whites made for a palate that was sophisticated, fun, and full of whimsy. 

Since I spend my free time putting together a baking blog, I knew all of our guests were expecting fantastic desserts and creative touches throughout the night.  Although I left most of the baking up to the professionals, I actually did make the 100 escort card cookies myself.  My Dad helped me build the wire frame to hang them for display, and all together it made for an extremely personal and delicious element to our guests’ experience.  The dessert table itself – thoughtfully assembled in our colors and favorite flavors – was titled “Ryan and Erica’s Sweet Tooth” as a fun reference to my blog’s name.

Some people may question why brides put so much effort into an event that only lasts several hours, but I learned that the planning, especially when it involves family and friends, is almost just as special as the wedding itself.  My husband and I are planners at our core, so we definitely were in our element the past year making our massive wedding to-do list and slowly but surely crossing off every item.  But my favorite part of the wedding ended up being the ceremony, which actually involved the least amount of planning.  Even if I wanted to, I couldn’t have planned Ryan’s eyes tearing up as he read his vows.  The stripes, flowers, and touches of gold were beautiful, but in the end, it was the immense amount of love and emotion surrounding us that day that I’ll remember the most.  Thank you Style Me Pretty for inspiring me to create the wedding of my dreams and for letting me share mine with you today!  

Photography: Julie Morawski for Carla Ten Eyck Photography | Flowers: Jane of Just for you Weddings | Wedding Dress: Alvina Valenta | Bridesmaids' Dresses: J.Crew | Hair and Makeup: Lauren and Catie of Dana Bartone & Company | DJ: Powerstation Events | Dessert Table: Truffles Bakery | Linen Rentals: General Eclectic | Music: Rich of Powerstation Events | Paper Products: Catherine Ray | Photobooth: Photobooth Planet | String Musicians: Suite Occasions | The Barns at Wesleyan Hills: The Barns at Wesleyan Hill

J.Crew, Hayley Paige and Jim Hjelm Occasions are members of our Look Book. For more information on how members are chosen, click here. Carla Ten Eyck, Dana Bartone & Company, Photobooth Planet and JLM Couture, Inc are members of our Little Black Book. Find out how members are chosen by visiting our FAQ page.
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