Soiree Special Events

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Look what I got!

Last week I received a fun envelope in my mailbox. It's a great day when the mailman provides something other than the ShopWise circular and an ad from Comcast. Couture Maps sent me an adorable letterpressed sample! Stephannie Barba is the artist out of San Francisco who comes up with these adorable maps. I think their return address is the cutest. I could just eat up that little crab:The sample map is of the Seychelles. I wish I could show you how thick and dreamy the paper is. The letterpress just sinks right into it and creates deep ridges:I was so impressed by the attention to detail. Look at the stamp they used!Couture Maps will draw a wedding map for any location worldwide! I blogged about them last summer -- their designs just keep getting cuter and cuter. If you're on the market for invitations or other paper goods, Stephannie creates those too!


Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Vendor Spotlight: The Dandelion Patch

Last week I stopped in to meet the fantastic ladies at The Dandelion Patch! This adorable little neighborhood store carries all kinds of paper goods (think invitations, save the dates, thank you cards, etc) as well as gifts that are perfect for bridesmaids and moms.

They have a flagship store in the heart of Vienna on Church Street and a new location in the Reston Town Center. They are conveniently right across the street from Ben & Jerry's, which incidentally is having Free Cone Day today. Here are some photos I took from my visit to their Reston shop:
Look how adorable their storefront is! I love stopping in this shop whenever I get the chance:
A look at the entire inside of the store:
They have walls and walls of stationery from many different companies:I thought these journals were so precious:
This Crane display caught my eye:
They carry a lot of Anna Griffin stuff too:
Here's their 'invitation corner'! Each of those binders contains dozens of invitations from different designers. The Dandelion Patch carries Dauphine Press, elum, Envelopments, Kate Spade, Twig and Fig, Vera Wang, and Wiley Valentine (to name just a few).
Please stop in at either of their two stores and tell them we sent you! You don't need an appointment to check out the wedding invitations but you'll get one-on-one service if you call ahead. Also if you're going on a Saturday, aim for the morning or evening when they're less busy.


Monday, April 28, 2008

Inspiration Board: Tying the knot

I'm in love with New England, especially Massachusetts. The rich history of sea and sail makes for a great wedding theme, even if you are south of the Mason-Dixon!

Row 1: boat | guest book | favors
Row 2: flowers |
shoes | dress
Row 3: centerpiece |
save the date | escort flags

This color scheme isn't for the faint of heart! Bright, bold colors make a statement, just make sure that it is your statement before selecting any color. But as with any color pallet, the proper balance of color can add drama to an otherwise bland decor.

It is also important to showcase your theme in a stylish, chic way. Here, the Save the Dates introduce the sea side theme (more subtle options are out there) in a cute way. The escort cards, favors, and 'guest book' come together and make this unique theme one to remember.

How can you and Mr. Right make your hobby into the perfect wedding theme?


Thursday, April 24, 2008


Oy, tagged again! We actually love being can see the evidence here and here. This time the game's a little different. Started by Saundra, here's the rules:
  1. Link to the person that tagged you and post the rules on your blog.
  2. Share 5 songs you are embarrassed to admit to others you like and tell why.
  3. Tag 7 random people at the end of your post and include links to their blogs.
  4. Let each person know that they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.
SO, here are my 5 top embarrasing songs:

1. Good Old Fashioned Loverboy by Queen:
2. Burning Love by Elvis:
3. Waterloo by ABBA:
4. Hold on Tight by ELO:
5. Come on Eileen by Dexy's Midnight Runners:
Apparently I have an odd obsession with music from the '70s and early '80s? All of these songs are great to turn up in the car and jam along to. If anyone spends abnormal amounts of time on the Dulles Toll Road, look for me dancing in my Honda!

I've decided to tag MK, WeddingWire, Kim, Chariots, Vicky, Tracy, and Armin!

UPDATE: Ryan apparently likes to dance to Bell Biv DeVoe:


Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Soiree Classifieds: Hoop Skirt

This hoop skirt is $20! The first person to comment here (with their email address) will get it. If I need to ship it to you, please add a couple dollars for postage. Otherwise, pickup is in Reston, VA. I'll contact you by email to make all the arrangements. If you're interested and someone else has already commented, please comment anyway! There's a chance that the first person will try it on and not fit, hate it, etc.
This hoop skirt was actually bought for my own wedding in 2006. I bought it from a bride who hadn't used it and then I never used it either. I'm not sure how much she got it for but I remember paying her $50. At this point I'll just be glad to get it out of the house!

The skirt is made up of several thin metal hoops. The hoops are adjustable and are held together by little plastic joiners. Therefore you can make it as large or as small as you want. It would be perfect for a wedding gown that doesn't have any fluff underneath or for a bride who wants to vamp up her ballgown and make a statement.

The backside closes with a hook similar to a bikini top. The elastic is nice and wide so it's comfortable:I am a regular street size 6-8 and it was just slightly tight on me. It's elastic so I'm sure it could fit anyone from a size 2-10. However if you're more of a 4-6, I think it would be perfect. Height is not as important as the bottom few inches of your gown will drape over it. You can also pull the hoop skirt up or down a few inches as necessary. To give you an idea of height in the picture, I'm 5'9 and not wearing shoes. It falls about 2" above the ground. If you try it on at my home and hate it, I'll re-list it here so you don't end up with something you won't use.


Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Inspiration Board: Spring is in the air

A seasonally chic wedding is an indoor or outdoor affair!

An outdoor wedding in spring doesn't need a lavish decor to treat your guests to a breath-taking experience. Find ways to utilize the elements already present in the outdoor space: flowers on site can add to your decor without adding to your budget. Is there a flower-lined walkway that could double as your aisle? Fountains, topiaries, or a stone wall can add depth and frame your ceremony.

To ensure there is no rain on your parade (for those hosting an indoor reception) consider integrating the great outdoors in your details. A moss covered table incorporates color and texture to your place cards. Seasonal centerpieces are not only cost effective, but they also bring the beauty of spring to the table.

Either way, be creative and enjoy the fruits of the season!


Monday, April 21, 2008

Soiree's in L.A.!

We're very excited to announce that Soiree Special Events is now serving brides in West Los Angeles! Our associate AJ is back in action on the west coast and anxious to meet with new brides who are looking for a day-of coordinator, a full service wedding planner, or even something in between.

We'll be putting up a new LA website soon to share more information with all of our west coast brides.

For brides in the San Diego area, our associate Amy will soon be coming your way!


Saturday, April 19, 2008

Interview w/ Kimberly Brooke

Y'all know Kimberly Brooke, right? She shot the photos from Tricia and Jim's wedding last fall. C'mon, you remember....she took this beautiful image:I had lunch with Kim a few months ago and she's recently been doing vendor interviews on her fantastic blog. Over the past couple of weeks she's caught up with Evan of, Shannon of Starry Night Bakery, and Mike of Monachetti. This week it's my turn!


Friday, April 18, 2008

Congratulations, Caroline!

Congrats to our Rob Holley Giveaway winner, Caroline!

Inspired by Blue Orchid Designs, I used the integer generator at to pick a number between 1 and 63. We had 58 comments on the blog post here and an additional 5 comments on our website. Lucky #24 was our winner!
Caroline - I'll be in touch by email so you & Rob can set a time to get together. Once the photos are taken I'd love to share them here on the blog!


Soiree Classifieds: Chair Sashes

These chair sashes are FREE! The first person to comment here (with their email address) will get it. If I need to ship it to you, please send me a couple dollars for postage via PayPal. Otherwise, pickup is in Reston, VA. I'll contact you by email to make all the arrangements.

These chair sashes come from Dee & Adam's wedding, which took place last spring. It was a beautiful wedding and we were glad to be a part of it. Unfortunately the bride and groom seem to have dropped off the face of the planet and took our final payment check with them. So, here are their chair sashes -- ready to go!

The sashes are a light silvery gray color and are very shiny. They'll fit most color schemes and add a little bit of shimmer to any boring chair. Here is one folded up:
Here's what it looks like on a chair. It's extra shiny because I had my camera's flash on.
This photo is a bit more realistic but blurry with no flash. They're really not plastic-looking but are more sheer and rather see-through:I'd say the sashes are about 6' in length. They could also make a pretty table runner if you have 5' guest tables. I have about 200 of these guys all packed up and ready to be yours.


Thursday, April 17, 2008

Reminder: Rob Holley Giveaway!

Don't forget to comment on the Rob Holley Photography Giveaway post! You have until Friday at noon to enter!


Soiree Classifieds: Cupcake Stand

This cupcake stand is FREE! The first person to comment here (with their email address) will get it. If I need to ship it to you, please send me a couple dollars for postage via PayPal. Otherwise, pickup is in Reston, VA. I'll contact you by email to make all the arrangements.

This Wilton cupcake stand was used at Libby & Dan's wedding all the way back in 2006! They had adorable cupcakes all along the tiers of the stand and the table. I wish I had a photo of it but hopefully these will do.

Here is the cake stand, fully assembled:
A closeup to show you the Grecian-looking pillars. I swear I'll wash the whole thing before you get it...the dried-on cupcake frosting there is a tad gross. I'd say there's about 4" in between each layer:
The top tier is a 6" plate that would be perfect for a mini cake to cut. Or you can stick about 4 cupcakes up here:
The one flaw to this guy is that it's very unstable. We were very lucky at Libby & Dan's wedding that nobody bumped the table. If you end up with this pretty stand, you'll probably want to hot glue or superglue the tiers to each pillar, just in case!


Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Inspiration Board: Programs

Wedding programs take on every shape, size, and color and reflect the style of the wedding. For those brides who enjoy being creative with the wedding details, programs are another opportunity to personalize your special day.

Here are some of the interesting ones I've found!

So, what exactly goes into a program?

The Basics:
On the cover or in a central place:

Your family, bridal party, and anyone participating in your ceremony:

The Details:
The order of your ceremony:

Your guests will greatly appreciate the ability to follow along. For more complicated ceremonies, or ones that incorporate traditions unfamiliar to your guests, you may offer an explanation or origin of the tradition. Your guests want to share in your ceremony and this will help them do that.

And any special notes for your guests:

Have your guests traveled from the four corners of the earth? Do you want to remember a loved one who can't celebrate with you in person? Or maybe this is just the perfect spot to thank your parents and welcome your guests - this is a good place to add a personal note.

Program of the reception:

Outlining your reception is a good idea if there is a program of events. While this is unusual for traditional American receptions, many ethnic receptions include multiple toasts or dance performances so your guests will want to know the who, when, or what will happen during the evening. The amount of information you include depends on how familiar your guests are with the traditions.


Venue Spotlight: The Newseum

Ryan and I recently had the honor of attending the Newseum's open house! This beautiful venue is brand spankin' new...they just opened to the public this past Friday. The building is located at 6th & Pennsylvania, very close to where Constitution and Pennsylvania meet. You won't believe the view of the Capitol! Here are a few photos from our visit!

The main lobby area is bright, airy, and huge:The screen you see is actually the largest indoor HDTV in the world. They flipped news images the whole night and also scanned the crowd with cameras:These elevators are the coolest ones I've ever seen. There is no elevator shaft and you can see all the way around and through it. The elevator is raised by a huge pole that comes out of the ground. There must be a 100' hole underneath the building:Plus they're large enough to fit a bar or some furniture! Here's Ryan enjoying a comfy ottoman. When's the last time you sat down in an elevator? Here's the reward for going to the 6th & 7th floors:That huge rooftop patio connects to this beautiful reception room. It would be perfect for a smaller modern-themed wedding:The next floor has a beautiful wood-floored hallway, complete with a newspaper from every country displayed on the wall:The largest reception room can hold up to about 250 guests:And look at the view! Can you imagine an outdoor ceremony here, looking out over the Capitol building?A view of Pennsylvania Avenue:And Penn in the opposite direction, looking out over the west wing of the National Gallery of Art, the Smithsonian Castle, the Museum of Natural History, the Washington Monument, and the Federal Trade Commission building: There's plenty of sightseeing to be done inside, as well! Here is a large portion of the Berlin Wall:And a hunk of a famous NYC building:The Newseum is quickly going to be one of DC's most popular venues. Their rental fees are comparable to most other downtown locations and with in-house catering by Wolfgang Puck, how can you go wrong? For more information on renting this beautiful space, check out their useful website.


Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Tax Day Humor

A little bit of funny from some vintage Mel Brooks:


Monday, April 14, 2008

Paris Trends & Feathered Shoes

Do you remember last year when Kim at Parisian Events sent me a stack of French bridal magazines? Remember a few posts later when I told you all about how American fashion tends to follow French fashion after a couple seasons? Do you remember these hip feathered shoes from that post?Guess what? The feather shoe idea hasn't died yet! We're still waiting for it to hit in the States but it's officially a tend in Paris. Check out this smokin' hot baby from Kim's blog:What a pretty pretty shoe! Now if the kid gloves and buttoned leather boots would only make a comeback...