Alchemy Fine Events designs the Mike Larson Tuscany Wedding Styleshop!
Back in May I hopped on a plane back to Italia to design and style the Mike Larson Tuscany Wedding Photography Workshop [Style Shop]. I was thrilled to say the least! I completed my masters in graphic design in Florence, Italy and a large part of my heart has remained there ever since. Not only was I lucky enough to live and be immersed into such a culturally rich and historic city, I was also working part-time coordinating luxury travel tours and events at wineries, castles and villas throughout Tuscany. With these wonderful contacts I knew that I had to find someway to come back and bring my passion for design and weddings with me. Designing weddings in Tuscany has been on my list of goals and hopefully this is the just the beginning of making that dream come true!
Here is a preview of some of the photos that Mike Larson took during our workshop which was recently featured on Style Me Pretty and some of my inspirations and Tuscan treasures that I found for the Styleshop:
After being asked to join the team for this amazing opportunity I immediately got some of my favorite American vendors on board such as Small Masterpieces, known for their gorgeous estate china, pressed glass and silveware collections, and Erica O’Brien, known for her deliciously designed cakes. Throw in a ruffly sparkly number from BHLDN and an architectural Angel Sanchez gown from M Bride and I was on my way. This was in addition to some of my own vintage pieces, needless to say I wasn’t traveling light! After my arrival into Firenze is when the real design process began as I wanted to get inspiration from the streets and markets themselves. My vision was to combine rustic Tuscan elements such as farm tables and rough hand woven linens and combine them with modern and glamorous elements for a fun and playful juxtaposition of styles. After meeting with the talented florist Simona of Floralia and showing her my ideas and designs we were off and running! Her treasures alone including vintage chandeliers worthy of large scale castles and hand painted golden goblets was enough to make me fall in love. She is truly a gem and I can’t wait to work with her again! We wanted to infuse a blend of soft purples and peaches that would gently fade from hue to hue in different shades and tones and combine mixed metals and crystals for lots of shine and texture.
For the Italian wedding invitation design, I wanted a look that captured the feeling that I wanted to accomplish for the entire shoot: glamorous, yet modern with a few exotic surprises, such as the copper glitter envelope liners. I created a trifold invitations that featured the silhouette of the cypress trees Tuscany is known for and created a custom geometrical pattern and icons to blend the styles together. The outside of the trifold featured an ombre of purple behind the geometrical pattern and a glittery copper belly band.
We set off the romance and sparkle of this BHLDN dress with beautiful baubles by Rachel Leigh. I also found this hand painted gold tray on a small side street in Florence to display her gorgeous gems.
For the ceremony site I had Floralia create a romantic and breezy draped gazebo and then hang a candlelit crystal chandelier from it and place crystal candelabras under it. Big lush arrangements of peonies were offset by clusters of smaller arrangements of purple sweetpeas, lisianthus and peach spray roses. For a clean and modern twist we used Louis Ghost Chairs for guest seating as to not take away any of the focus from the views and ceremony. Definitely not your standard wedding in Tuscany!
For the dinner setting I brought in a rustic wooden farm table to build our lush tablescape upon. I started by laying down the couture silk Valentino fabric I found at a luxury textile store in Florence that I just couldn’t pass up. I combined modern mirrored cube risers with cut crystal, hand painted golden goblets, lucite cube votive holders and vintage silver cups I brought over myself for a luxurious yet eclectic fusion of styles.
To blend the modern and Tuscan styles together further, I had square glass plates cut and found the talented Tina of Calligraphy by Durante to work her magic on for place cards before I traveled abroad. Her details and flourishes are so reminiscent of a Renaissance style!
I found these woven scarves in the markets and wanted their bold splashes of purple and magenta’s on the table to tie in the Valentino silk and flowers. I bought several of these inexpensive scarves and turned them into our napkins. The vintage silver napkin rings by Small Masterpiece worked perfectly to polish up the look! I love the texture of these velvety violet lisianthus flowers tucked tightly inside a vintage golden goblet by Floralia.
It wouldn’t be Tuscany without an elaborate cheese and wine bar for the guests to indulge in. Large scale ceramics, a 15 foot wooden table and an abundance of Villa la Selva’s own wine, cheese, fruits and breads were styled together with my vintage silver goblet and crystal decanter collection for an over the top luxe look.
Erica OBrien created this texturally rich cake with lace style appliques and violet silk trim. I love the contrast of this rich terracotta wall as the background! I love how dramatic and romantic this evening ceremony location would be glowing with natural candlelight against the cypress trees and silhouette of the Tuscan hillsides. Che bellissima! These morning after shots from Mike make my heart swoon. The light in Tuscany is like nothing other.
Much more wonderful work to come in the next few days by the talented students that attended the workshop. Stay tuned for even more creative shots, new angles and details. It’s amazing to see how the same designs can be translated so differently in each photographers’ eyes showcasing what an artform photography truly is!
Grazie a tutti!
Photography: Mike Larson Photographers, Inc. / Design, Styling + Coordination: Alchemy Fine Events & Invitations / Invitation + Stationery Design: Alchemy Fine Events & Invitations / Floral Design + Furniture Rentals: Floralia / Table Settings: Small Masterpiece [ We Set The Table ] / Wedding Cake: Erica OBrien Cake Design / Venue: Villa La Selva / Bridal Gown (white): Angel Sanchez via M Bride Salon / Bridal Gown (cream ruffle): BHLDN / Jewelry: Rachel Leigh Jewelry / Calligraphy: Calligraphy by Durante