A Wine Tasting Rehearsal Dinner & Cheese Pairing Table Featured on Martha Stewart!
One thing that all of my closest friends know extremely well about me is this… I LOVE CHEESE!!!! Not only do I love to cook with it, I appreciate it with wine, with fruit and basically any opportunity to put out a fragrant spread of delicious delicacies. Pour me a glass of wine, nibble and let the chatting begin.
When working with Jessica and Ilya for their wedding and rehearsal dinner, I learned about their passion of food and wine and we immediately clicked over it! With Italian, Jewish and Persian heritages in play, food was always a top priority and so important to all of their families cultures. Not only does food bring people together over tables, it sparks conversations, memories and new friendships. So when designing Jessica and Ilyaâ€™s rehearsal dinner I decidedÂ to create the ultimate cheese table that could stand up to the most beautiful wines Ilyaâ€™s uncle was providing and to whet their guestâ€™s palette of the weekend to come.
I created this custom designed cheeseboard by painting a plank of wood with chalk board paint for the perfect backdrop . For each cheese we offered, we suggested a bread, a fruit, and spread to be paired with each of the delicious creamy cheeses to create the perfect bite!
Read on to see the details below but donâ€™t miss even more details of our cheese pairing table on our Martha Stewart feature seen here!
For a wonderful variety of cheeses make sure to cover your milks! Cow, sheep and goat milk cheeses all have such wonderful unique characteristics to them and pair very differently from sweet, crunchy or salty components. For our cheese pairing table we offered goodies such as spicy and salty meats, briny green and black olives, sweet spreads and preserves such as quince paste and tangy and spicy components such as dried apricots and crystallized ginger.
Guests were offered cocktails such as The Buckley and Peach Proscecco to sip as they enjoyed lawn games and listened to ragtime music played live on the piano.
For this wine tasting dinner we used pinot grigio bottles as candleholders for a true bistro feel mixed with white blooms in vintage glassware.
Each guest received a pan baguette wrapped in cheese cloth and a lavender sprig tied with the perfectly hued bakers twine with well wishes for their meal to come. To create an outdoor bistro atmosphere I hung drum lampshades from the patio rafters to create a cozy and intimate lighting. We mixed black china and black chairs with a mint green ticking striped linen for a clean and bright palette.
In lieu of printed menus we wrote the menus on suspended mirrors for guests to gaze at before taking their chairs.
From cheese to wine to food and conversation, we enjoyed blending our love of food, entertainment and design so much for this spectacular rehearsal dinner! We hope you enjoyed it too!
Event Design, Planning, Invitations & Flowers by Alchemy Fine Events & Invitations
Photography by Scott Clark
Headboard Rental by Pow Wow
Catering by Joeâ€™s in Venice
Linens by La TavolaRead More »
A San Diego Intimate Bridal Show featuring Modern Luxury Design
A few weeks ago we had the exciting idea to collaborate with our favorite San Diego vendors and create a very un-bridally bridal show! Along with Isari Flower Studio and Luna Photo, we pulled together our favorite San Diego vendors and designed and coordinated this special event just as we would a real wedding. No big tacky signs, no booths, nothing like a traditional bridal show! I really wanted to show a bride ‘this is how we would really all work together!â€™. From creating a cohesive design plan, site plan and gearing our furniture, flowers, food, music and drinks all towards the same design direction for one cohesive look verses a piecemeal feeling that you walk away from traditional bridal shows with.
Whether you need to fill in a few spots in your vendor list or come and hire the DREAM team as a whole, we were and are very proud to bring you San Diegoâ€™s best! Thank you everyone for helping us have had such an amazing turn out of more than 350 brides! With such an amazing success DREAM may be making another appearance later this year.
Pop Art + Modern Glam + Impressionism + Vintage
â€“ Plan, Design, Invite:Â Alchemy Fine Events & Invitations
â€“ Embellish: Isari Flower Studio
â€“ Capture: Luna Photo
â€“ Dine:Â Toast Catering
â€“ Stay: Starwood Hotels (The US Grant,Â The W,Â The Westin)
â€“ Dance:Â Elan Artists
â€“Â Film:Â Modern 8
â€“Â Nibble:Â Sweet Cheeks Baking
â€“Â Illuminate:Â AV Event Rentals
â€“Â Set the Table:Â Casa de Perrin
â€“Â Furnish & Accessorize:Â Pow Wow Vintage Rentals
â€“Â Beautify:Â Shampoo Too!
â€“Â Dress:Â M Bride
â€“Â Say Cheese:Â The Foto Box
â€“Â Discover:Â Luxe Finds
â€“Â Style:Â CBS Life Stylist
â€“Â Sip:Â For Real Bartenders
â€“ Pillows: Lounge Appeal
â€“ Register: Bloomingdales
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A Modern Orange and White Modern New York Birthday Bash in Armonk New York
I am such an admitted lover of modern and eclectic design so when my client contacted me and expressed her love of the same I knew we were going create something special. â€˜Love, Laughter & Smiles, XOXOâ€™ was Shariâ€™s signature sign off wish on all for her birthday and holiday cards she gave to her friends and family. So naturally, when we were looking for inspiration on how she wanted to celebrate this special milestone with her loved ones, she wanted it to be filled with the same sentiments.
Our shared love of the color orange and of modern, clean contemporary design was the inspired design platform for this special evening. Clean sleek lines, lots of chic white couches and ottomans and mixed glass and Lucite made for a modern yet eclectic feel that was still warm and inviting.
Mid-century modern smoky and topaz stackable side tables were paired with rustic wood logs to create a visually interesting cluster upon which to layer vibrant orange and clean white arrangements of roses and orchids.
To keep in theme and design with our custom chevron pattern I created for the invitation we printed fabric via Spoonflower to use for the throw pillows and line the cabinet which we made the purse valet.
Finding the perfect caterer for this special event was first and foremost on our list. We wanted guests to dine on creatively delicious food all night but also be able to eat standing up or walking around. Peter Callahan was the perfect choice! With such creativity and ingenious displays of presentation Peter was able to wow the guests with his delicious flavors, unique alcohol pairings (mini rum and coke bottles anyone?) and runway worthy staff.
For an extra special touch we created a VIP lounge complete with â€˜bottle serviceâ€™ boasting a luxury tequila tasting served out of an orange Hermes tray.
In lieu of a dessert bar we created a vintage cigarette-tray style roving candy bar with custom printed matching chevron bags for guests to fill up on goodies to eat or take with them.
60 Second novelist â€“ Dan Hurley â€“ The 60 Second Novelist was a hilarious way to get guests talking as this faster than the speed of light novelist would ask you questions about your life and then in 60 seconds recreate a hilarious foot-note version of your biography.
Tarot & Lip Print Reader Maxine Albert â€“ To keep in line with the XOXO theme we brought in Lip Print Reader Maxine Albert to read the ladies kiss prints from and read their tarot cards.
This event was featured on 100 Layer Cake!!
Event Design & Coordination Alchemy Fine Events & Invitations
Invitation & Stationery Design Alchemy Fine Events & Invitations
Floral Design Rountree Flowers
Catering Peter Callahan
Photography Les Loups
Custom Pillows by Nena Von
Fabric designed by Alchemy Fine Events & Invitations via Spoonflower
DJ Jason Fioto of Generation Events
Lighting James Daniel Entertainment
Pizza Truck Jianettoâ€™s Pizza
60 Second Novelist Dan Hurley
Lip Print & Tarot Card Reader Maxine Albert
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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,Â 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 Oâ€™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 wasnâ€™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 canâ€™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 couldnâ€™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 magentaâ€™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 wouldnâ€™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 Selvaâ€™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. Itâ€™s amazing to see how the same designs can be translated so differently in each photographersâ€™ 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 /Â 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
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