There are some venues where you can’t ignore the dominant motif (e.g. the zoo, a theater, a monument). This may come in to play in three ways. First, if you have to have a particular venue then maybe you have to compromise on the theme. Second, if you have to have a particular theme then maybe you have to compromise on the venue. Third, maybe the theme will suggest a particular venue or visa versa. That said, it doesn’t mean you can’t make any theme or venue your own. For example, if your venue is a theater, there a million ways to do a venue driven theme. At the basic level, there is the play or movie based theme. Going further, there is the film noir theme where everything is black and white, or there is the action movie theme where you can do bright colors and fun animated graphics. On the other side, you can do any number of play based themes like a Playbill concept using black and yellow or a Broadway concept with a red carpet and bright lights. The ideas go on, but the idea is the same: embrace your venue!
A customer asked me about this and I thought it would make a good post: What do you do when you want to integrate two divergent themes? First, because I can’t say this enough: you do have to have a theme. Simply piecing things together that you like will confuse your guests and it won’t accurately show how much time and effort you put into your event.
Now, if you want to put together bits and pieces from two themes, it can be done if you do two things:
- Choose one color to represent one theme and a second color for the other and stick to it! Further, be conscientious of how often you use one color or another. In general, they should be used together. For example, if you use blue as your base and pink as your accent/detail color: blue dresses with pink flowers, plus blue candy containers with pink candies, plus blue mounted invites with pink graphics, etc.
- Have one element that is a combination of both themes. For example, have your planner design a custom logo to use on all your paper arts that is both themes together. Then, use the logo on all of your elements to that it’s apparent as to why you are using it.
The storybook shower was a great success with compliments all around. Baby got all kinds of great gifts, including at least one personalized book from each shower guest. People really seemed to enjoy the “book instead of a card” idea and took a lot of care to pick out a childhood favorite, or match the book to the theme of their gift.
Of course, books were incorporated throughout the entire shower in all kinds of cute and clever ways:
- Food – Each of the dishes had a storybook theme. For example, we had “Goodnight Moon” finger sandwiches on crescent rolls, “She Sells Seashells” pasta salad made with shell macaroni, “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs” meatballs served with umbrella toothpicks, “If You Give a Mouse a Cookie” cookies, etc. If you’re planning a storybook shower and have a menu in mind, try going to amazon.com to see what’s available, or consult a children’s librarian. Also, check with your local bakery to see if they can make a book-shaped cake.
- Centerpieces – Each centerpiece featured a book, a snack, and a toy of some sort. For example, I had “The Rainbow Fish” book paired with Colored Goldfish crackers and a fish toy and “The Poky Little Puppy” along with a stuffed dog and Scooby Snacks (dogbone-shaped graham crackers). Cookie Monster books are always an obvious choice, and you can pair a ton of books with animal crackers.
- Favors – Bookmarks, of course! The shower featured hand-crocheted heart bookmarks that are available for sale through Events That Impress. They are adorable! Comment here if you are interested and I’ll pass along a photo.
Mid-April and I am busy planning a baby shower. The couple is doing their nursery in a “smarts” theme, with alphabet bedding for the crib, bookshelves aplenty, and animal decorations like the “wise owl” and the “sly fox.” What could be better for the shower than a storybook theme?
The invitations have gone out and we’ve asked each guest to bring a book instead of a card, writing a message to the baby somewhere inside the book. I’ve always loved this idea because books are so much more treasured and long-lasting than the average greeting card. Even if you aren’t planning a storybook shower, it is still a great way to build baby’s library.
Speaking of ideas, I have all kinds of plans to incorporate the storybook theme throughout the shower. However, we want to have lots of fun surprises for the mother-to-be, so I can’t post them until after it’s over. Look for part #2 after April 25th!
The wedding turned out AMAZING! Sure, I’m a little biased, but really for all the little things in the wheel – it truly was a great event. I was worried at first because of the fairly sizeable snow storm that dumped on the entire region in the hours before the ceremony. Lucky enough, the only one that was late was the limo driver. Other than that, traffic was light enough and we left early enough that we were able to accomplish everything we needed to accomplish.
Before the ceremony, Deonna and I decorated the reception hall. We were responsible for the centerpieces, favors, place cards, table cards, guest book, signature frame, custom chair ribbons for the bride and groom, toasting flutes, cake cutters, and probably more. We really took the responsibility for all the reception hall details as all good planners/coordinators should do. Between the two of us we had the whole place decorated in about two hours!
I then picked up the flowers (pick up saved money on not paying delivery charges) and took them to the church. The bride was very happy with her bouquet and all the flowers looked great. I set up the unity candle as well as made sure all bouquets and boutonnieres were given out. The ceremony was memorable; especially when Rachael’s dad responded to the question “who gives this woman” with “her mother and I definitely do.” It was a great moment and the couple had huge smiles as they left the church. Instead of a receiving line leading into the snow, Rachael and Dan greeted all their guests as they left their pews.
After the ceremony, Rachael, Dan, and the wedding party stayed at the church to do many indoor photos. I rushed over to the reception hall to make sure all the candles were lit and everything was in place. Good thing, too… many guests went directly to the reception even though there was about an hour’s difference.
The reception was fantastic! The food was edible and timely – they chose a duet platter and vegetarian dish served family style. As many complements as we received overall, the aspect that had the most comments was the favors. It was totally worth while to hand wrap all those rose-shaped lollipops because they were so memorable! The most important, of course, is that the bride and groom had a great time! They really enjoyed themselves and so did the guests.
We did a lot of planning and crafting over several months leading up to the event. More than anything, this wedding proved that having a consistent theme or element is what makes a memorable event. For Rachael and Dan, we designed a custom logo with two red roses and a black filigree design. They were the only one who had this look and it was on everything. It was on their invitation, the place cards, table numbers, and the thank you notes on the favors. In fact, the couple liked the logo so much they both had it tattooed after the wedding! I’m hoping they’ll share a photo with us soon. Anyway, even if it isn’t a logo—maybe it’s your monogram or a symbol that means something to you—do have a consistent theme. Use this theme on everything thing you have for the wedding and keep it special for your future. If you need help figuring out what this means to your planning, give us a call. We can definitely help you narrow down your vision into the perfect event theme.
Looking forward to the next event!!!!!
In this economic/business climate of downsizing and lean processes, corporate events and their planning have forced cuts in financing and personnel. This is in contrast to their increase in importance. Now, more than ever, it is important to broadcast to employees and to the public at large that your business, your brand, is strong. Your showing of strength can still fit your new, leaner business model. If you don’t have an in-house event planner and/or if it is newly part of your job, rethink out-sourcing the planning. The key to efficiency is to focus. Let us sweat the small stuff, watch the bottom line, and disseminate your brand message while you focus on the things that only you do. Be strong!
Let us, for a moment, assume you read my last blog entry about considering yourself before getting married. Assuming also, you determined that you are the “marrying kind” I will pursue the question of your relationship. I refuse to believe that people don’t already do this before getting married – then again, Elvis chapels exist for a reason. Anyway, I don’t assume to have the answer for this one. Except to say, different things work for different couples. There is isn’t one question or one aspect to look at that will tell you “for sure”. I think that’s my advice to you – don’t compare. After all, you are so in love others don’t come close right? Look to your friends for support and a sounding board. Take their advice for what it is – an outside opinion. The REAL answers to any relationship question has to come from the INSIDE. Know what does work for you and keep it going!
A custom logo can be anything from a monogram using the wedding colors to an illustration that is meaningful to the bride & groom.
For example, one couple I worked with wanted to use an oak leaf as their logo. They were both nature lovers and believed the oak symbolized strength and growth. We incorporated this element into many aspects of the wedding:
- An invitation including an oak leaf logo, the pages of which were stitched together and held in place with a small branch
- Wedding favors tied with a ribbon and topped with an oak leaf cutout featuring each guest’s name
- Centerpieces of brass lanterns placed on hand-sewn oak leaf table runners
- Bouquets and boutonnieres utilizing oak leaves instead of traditional greenery
- Place cards at the reception featuring oak leaves—the number of leaves on the card actually served double duty and told the servers which meal each guest had ordered (3 for beef, 2 for chicken)
- Other wedding correspondence with the oak leaf symbol (programs, thank you notes, save the dates, etc.)
The elements all worked together to create a cohesive, custom look. Not only did the couple love putting their own “stamp” on the festivities, so did their friends and family.
Events That Impress can assist by designing and incorporating a custom theme such as this one.
Many people ask: Where do I get started? The answer is simple – decide that you want to be married. If you are planning a wedding, you are planning a celebration of the start of your forever. Let’s face it: weddings are fun. It’s a chance to be the center of attention, to get showered with adoration and gifts, and to revel in the frivolity that only weddings provide. The wedding isn’t the hard part – it’s the being married. The divorce rate in this country is staggering. I do not truly believe that half of all marriages start not believing they will last forever (except in Vegas where I would wager more than half). Sometimes, things don’t work out. I encourage you to seriously consider not only your relationship, but also yourself. Are you the kind of person that can be married? Do you want to be a husband or wife to this person? Do you have the stamina to make a forever commitment? If you are asking yourself, “how long is that?” you may have an issue. The bond of matrimony should not be entered into lightly. It’s not an appointment on your life calendar or a check box on your “someday” to do list. It’s not the first logical step of your downward shame cycle that will end with you shaving your head and going to rehab. Being married (the part after the wedding) is the rest of your life. It is how you make decisions. It is being part of something more than what you are as an individual. Saying “I do” is just the first step. After that, there’s only forever to go.
Are you ready?