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The Most Glamorous Garden Affair in the Middle of the City

A wedding through the lens of Jose Villa is pure beauty no matter how you spin it. And this celebration has a whole slew of wedding superstars behind the scenes. From the most timeless design and planning by Mindy Weiss to layers upon layers of white blooms (including a floral dog leash!) by HMR Designs and topped off with one of the most insanely gorgeous cakes by Sylvia Weinstock, this collection of images just might do you in.


From the bride… John and I were in the same year at the same high school, but in our 4 years there, we never once spoke to each other. It was only several years after college that we finally met at a mini high school reunion in a small bar in Chicago. We’ve been inseparable ever since. Much of our wedding was planned long ago, I think it started when I was 12. I knew I wanted an airy, romantic garden in the city. I knew I wanted my bridesmaids to wear different dresses. I knew Sylvia Weinstock was going to create my sugar-flower covered cake. I knew there’d be a table dedicated purely to desserts. And I knew my dress was going to be lace. My adolescent dreams didn’t veer far from reality. John and I were fortunate enough to be surrounded by a wonderful team who helped us bring our vision to life. We wanted our wedding to feel intimate and romantic. Soft lighting, beautiful fabrics and drapes, and an abundance of flowers set the perfect tone for an unforgettable evening.

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Photographer: Jose Villa Photography | Videography : Vidicam Productions | Planner: Mindy Weiss Party Consultants | Cake: Sylvia Weinstock | Reception Venue: Jennifer Clarke At The Peninsula Chicago | Brides Shoes: Christian Louboutin | Bridesmaids' Dresses: J. Mendel | Bridesmaids' Dresses: Jovani | Bridesmaids' Dresses: Badgley Mischka | Makeup: Emily Oliver | Hair : Salon Buzz | Invitations and Calligraphy : Bernard Maisner | Band : Becca Kauffman Orchestra | Brides Dress and Veil: Vera Wang | Ceremony Venue : St. James Cathedral | Florals and Decor : HMR Designs | Grooms Tux: Ralph Lauren | Mother of Grooms Gown : Johnston & Murphy | Mother of brides gown: Carolina Herrera

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10 Things Your Florist Wishes You Knew

If you’ve been pinning gorgeous bouquets and intricate centerpieces for years, you’re probably the type of bride who’s put a lot of thought into her wedding flowers. But there are still a few things you need to know before making the floral decisions for your wedding. Here are ten insider tips that wedding florists would like you to keep in mind before your big day!

Seasonal matters.

If you ask for anemones in July or calla lilies in November, it’s going to run your bill way, way up. Look for flowers that will be blooming naturally around your wedding date, and stay flexible on the exact breed of flower.

Not all florists are the same.

When finding a florist, ask questions about delivery services, how far before your wedding the bouquets will be created, and if they provide other services (linen rentals, table number rentals, etc.)

No, flowers aren’t expensive only because they’re for your wedding.

The idea of a “wedding tax” being put on florals simply isn’t true. Flowers eat up a larger part of your budget because of the many hours put into them. Unlike for more basic events, brides tend to be very focused on complex details of their bouquets, leading to more hours for florists spent making them flawless. Between speaking with the bride, planning the florals, and actually executing the floral plan, florists can spend a ton of time bringing the bride’s floral vision to life. If you think about it, you’re really ordering custom art—and in most cases, multiple pieces.

DIY isn’t as easy as it seems.

It’s becoming more and more common or brides to put their own bouquets together or outsource to a friend. If that’s your thing, great—but make sure you do the research ahead of time. Removing pollen, thorns, and other pointy stems is an absolute necessity, and it looks a lot easier than it actually is to create a pretty group of flowers.

Outdoor photos can be killer on bouquets.

If you’re taking outdoor photos before your ceremony, limit the amount you pose with your flowers. The summer heat and winter chill can both be tough on flowers. Take a few portraits, then have a bridesmaid take your flowers back inside for a drink and some rest.

You should consider the environment.

Working with a florist that uses local gardeners means less gas and refrigeration used. Go as farm-to-table as possible. Bonus: organic flowers also tend to last longer!

Don’t use overly scented florals.

Some flowers smell amazing, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they’re a great fit for your centerpieces. Scents highly impact our taste buds, and so if you have lilies of the valley, lilacs, or other highly-fragrant flowers in your centerpiece, it could negatively affect how your wedding meal tastes to friends and family. Also, smells are so individual—you never know if something that smells wonderful to you smells less-than-stellar to your guests.

Think about your photos and wedding day look.

Don’t select flowers for your bouquet that will clash with your bridesmaid’s dresses, even if you love them. If your venue is over-the-top and colorful, consider going simpler with the color scheme of your centerpieces. Thinking about your aesthetic as a whole will help you make better floral decisions.

Think outside the box.

Adding a personal touch, like a rosary or a piece of your mom’s veil wrapped around your bouquet, is a super-simple way to bring even more meaning to your flowers. It’s also easy to do—just don’t forget to give your memento to your florist ahead of time. Some florists also love creating unique details like flowers for your cake or entrance arches for your reception. Ask your florist to show you photos of their favorite work they’ve created for weddings to get an idea of what they can do.

Trust your vendors.

Florists work with a natural product, which means they often need to stay flexible. If the flowers you ordered haven’t quite bloomed or aren’t as large as the florist would like, they may need to make substitutions to keep your florals looking perfect. Trust that your vendor has your best interests at heart and try not to be bridezilla over your bouquet.

At the end of the day, your florist wants to work with you to make your wedding the day you’ve been dreaming of. But by keeping these tips in mind, you’ll have fewer bumps in the road and smoother sailing to “I Do” surrounded by gorgeous florals.

Style Me Pretty Contributor – Claire Swinarski is a writer and podcaster based in Wisconsin. When she isn’t writing, she can be found obsessing over football, eating a burrito bowl, or hanging out with her husband and son. 

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Your Visual Guide to a Timeless Wedding Design

Mark my words, a wedding day designed like this will stand the test of time. A neutral palette, lush garden blooms, plus a table rich with layered textures equals a celebration that translates no matter the trends. Thanks to the lovelies of White Event Studio, Vasia Photography and the entire vendor crew for helping us ring in springtime in the prettiest way.

From Aranza Grant of White Events… I’ve always had a thing for feminine colors and when you throw the word “elegant” into the mix you have the most perfect combination. Society Florals gorgeous centerpiece and bouquet brought together the vision by choosing the perfect colors and flower varieties. Plume Calligraphy handcrafted the most stunning paper goods with beautiful illustrations. Ruth and Dean made a simple yet lovely cake embellished with handmade ribbon from Carousel and fresh blackberries. Conscious Hair and Heartwood & Co created the most romantic and timeless look for our gorgeous model, allowing her natural beauty to shine. The Lenora gown proved by White Peony was everything we could dream of for our model.

Last but not least, Vasia was an incredible woman to work with. Not only do I love her work but she is also so passionate and talented. When the scans came back, I had no doubt she was the perfect for this shoot. My advice to couples getting married is to bring their essence into the celebration and not to get caught up with a specific theme or color palette. Do what feels true tho you and have fun experimenting with colors and textures!

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Photography: Vasia Photography | Floral Design: Society Floral | Dress: The White Peony | Cake: Ruth And Dean | Shoes: Bella Belle | Makeup: Heartwood & Co. | Hair: Conscious Hair By Elena | Accessories: Bekah Anne | Paper Goods: Plume Calligraphy | Planning & Design: White Event Studio | Rentals + Decor: White Event Studio | Ribbon: Carousel

This LA Couple Planned Their Dream Wedding in Provence

Randi and David both work in the fashion industry, so it will come as a surprise to no one that their wedding day style was completely on point. They gathered up all their friends and family for a weekend in Provence with the amazing Lavender and Rose crew ensuring it all went off without a hitch. M & J Photography + Pascal Delé Filmaker documented the festivities and we’re covering every last bit.

From Lavender and RoseIt was a true delight for us to be able to assist Randi & David with their wedding in Provence. As the couple work in the world of fashion, both partners were particularly concerned with the style aspects of their big day right from the start. Based in Los Angeles, they fell in love with the Villa Baulieu near Aix en Provence knew it was the perfect place.

The weekend of festivities kicked off in a private villa where guests were treated to a tasting of local wines and cheeses with a wine expert and former sommelier from Alain Ducasse’s eatery in Las Vegas. Guests were then invited to savor a summer evening among the vines, discovering French gastronomy. It was a relaxed and informal sharing platter meal, during which the wine and conversation flowed aplenty.


More from Lavender and RoseThe morning of the wedding began with the long-awaited preparations at the Villa Baulieu. The ceremony triggered high emotions, with Randi & David exchanging vows before their loved ones, followed by a cocktail reception and dinner beneath the starry sky. High emotions and a few tears were then replaced by music, laughter and dancing until dawn. The wedding made for the perfect Provence summertime weekend!

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Photography: M & J Photography | Videography: Pascal Delé Filmaker | Event Design: Lavender and Rose | Wedding Planning: Lavender and Rose | Floral Design: Miss Rose By Perrine | Wedding Dress: Badgley Mishka | Cakes: Wedding Cakes By Pamela | Stationery: Crème De Papier | Wedding Shoes: Badgley Mischka | Catering: L'Eveil des Papilles | Makeup: Trew | Hair : Andrew Fitzsimons | Calligraphy: Nice Plume | Band: SALUT | Groom's Suit: Tom Ford | Celebrant: Anne Naylor | Wedding Venue: Villa Baulieu | Her Ring: Cartier | His Ring: Van Cleef & Arpels | Marquee: Organic Concepts | Rehearsal Dinner Dress: Michael Costello | Rehearsal Dinner Shoes: Tom Ford | Rehearsal Dinner Tableware: Options Hire | Rehearsal Dinner Venue: Private Villa in Rognes | Veil: JLM couture | Wedding Day Tableware: Aktuel

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