A classic wedding day calls for beautiful floral arrangements that won’t grow out of style. When selecting wedding centrepieces you’ll want to take into consideration the shapes of your tables, your colour palette and your overall theme. From tulips to roses, here are five inspiring wedding centrepiece ideas for your reception. These timeless picks are guaranteed to wow your guests.
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Tying the knot on Wategos Beach in Byron Bay, Australia was the natural location choice for Brittany Barr and Joel Hutchines. After all, it’s where the two spend most of their time together and it’s also where they got engaged. “I knew Britt was the one very early on in our relationship,” Joel shares. “We are best friends and we bring out the best in each other. It was never really a question of if, but more so when, I would propose.”
Keeping it a surprise from Britt, Joel planned to pop the question during their ritual morning walk to the beach with their dog. “I organized a couple of photographers to hide and take photos. This just happened to be after a cyclone and the beach was eroded; it was a rainy day and there was literally no one else there but us—which was very rare,” Joel describes. “My friend managed to capture an image of everything that made for the most amazing picture, with our dog and full city skyline in the background. I still look at the photo all the time and think how special that moment was, and how lucky we are to have each other and to live in such an amazing place.”
For their wedding day, the two, alongside 110 of their friends and family, said “I do” on a beach under a wooden arbour topped with vibrant flowers in shades of violet, pink, orange and green. “The flowers were quite possibly my favourite part of the wedding,” Britt says. “Elise from Elyssium Blooms is seriously a floral genius. I told her my idea and vision and she made it all come to life. My bouquet was extra-special because I attached my grandparents’ wedding photo to it. They weren’t able to travel all the way to Australia so it was my way of having them with me all day.”
Just as Britt and Joel were signing the register, the cloudy skies, which had looked threatening all day, finally unleashed rain upon them. “Joel swept me up and ran under a tree. It was actually for the best because the clouds gave us an amazing backdrop for our photos and we even got a rainbow!”
Following their ceremony, the pair and their guests headed to the Byron Beach Café for a cocktail-style party. A lounge area was set up, complete with a couch and armchairs for people to relax in, as well as an array of tables in varying heights for guests to set their food and drinks on.
Obsessed with shapes and colour, Britt ensured that everything from their geometric cake decor (which she and Joel made together), to the hexagonal-tiled guestbook, complemented their whimsical style. “I loved the geometric decorations and fashion in the year leading up to our wedding,” Britt says. “It just seemed really fun and unique to me, so Joel and I collaborated and came up with some interesting ideas.”
The rest of the evening digressed into one big dance party filled with great music, entertaining speeches and amazing food. “The speeches were one of my favourite parts of the night. They were super-emotional but funny and inspiring at the same time,” Britt says, and Joel agrees. “The night went by way too fast—we wish we could do it all again.”
After their wedding day, Britt and Joel kept the party going with a group trip. “We actually went on a ‘groupiemoon’,” Britt exclaims. “My family had flown over from Canada for the first time, so there was no way we were leaving them. We went up to Palm Cove in Far North Queensland and spent four days exploring the Great Barrier Reef, the Daintree Rainforest and lazing on the beach with cocktails. It was bliss!”
Brittany Barr and Joel Hutchines, September 27, 2014, Byron Bay, Australia.
Photography courtesy of Ivy Road Photography.
Ceremony location: Wategos Beach, Byron Bay, Australia
Reception location: The Byron Beach Cafe
Bridal gown: Barbra Allin from Becker’s Bridal
Bridesmaids’ attire: Lush Tutu Boutique (skirts), Kookai (tops), heels.com (shoes)
Groomsmen’s attire: Country Road (suits) with DIY bowties and pocket squares created by the groom’s sister
Groom’s tux: Saba
Cake: DIY cake and cupcakes made by the bride’s sister
Caterer: The Byron Beach Cafe
Flowers: Elise from Elyssium Blooms
Stationery: DIY by the groom and Emily from Impressworks
Lighting: Steve from Elyssium Lighting
Videographers: Maria and Al Tsudon from One Day in Mind
Celebrant: Ruth White
Being a DIY bride isn’t always easy, or budget-friendly. But, with the right supplies and a few inspired ideas it can be a cinch. As a rule of a thumb, don’t go into your wedding thinking you can craft everything–unless you have a well thought-out plan and quite a bit of time on your hands. Instead, pick a few DIY projects that you know will work in your favour. We suggest more manageable DIY crafts like a photo booth backdrop or really unique place cards, or, in this case: centrepieces. There are plenty of pretty (and simple!) ways to decorate your tabletops. To find a little inspiration, check out this collection of stunning DIY centrepiece ideas.
It was a music festival in New York City that initially brought Landry Fields, a guard-forward for the Toronto Raptors, and Elaine Alden, a model, together. “Landry was playing for the New York Knicks at that time and I was modeling in the city,” Elaine explains. “We had a lot of fun together at the festival. At one point he made a Dumb and Dumber joke and that’s what ultimately sold me.”
Landry decided to pop the question in the same city where he’d first met Elaine. “We were in New York, the Raptors were facing the Knicks that day,” Elaine shares. “We had a very casual lunch before Landry had to go shoot around. I had to go to the bathroom and on my way I saw a photo booth, which has always been our thing. We have a ton of photo booth pictures together.” The two got inside the booth to snap some shots to add to their collection. While waiting for the pictures to print, Elaine noticed that something had already been printed. “I flipped the print over and saw Landry holding up four different signs, one for each picture with the words ‘will you marry me’,” Elaine describes. “I turned around shocked, and there he was on one knee holding out my insanely perfect ring!”
The couple decided to host their celebration at Rockefeller Center’s 620 Loft & Garden, which overlooks the original Saks Fifth Avenue store as well as St. Patrick’s Cathedral, and Radio City Music Hall. To accent their classy yet understated glam look, the couple, along with the help of event planner Sofia Crokos, chose a colour palette full of blush, ivory, white and rose gold.
With 125 guests in attendance, Elaine walked down the aisle with her father in a stunning Inbal Dror bridal gown. “The ceremony was the highlight of our day,” Elaine recalls. “Watching our son go down the aisle on a wooden cart with a ‘Here Comes My Mommy’ sign on the back was so touching. And then, of course, looking up at Landry and saying our vows is a moment I’ll never forget.”
To keep the party going, the newlyweds ushered guests into their reception room, which was brimming with beautiful florals that included a mix of lisianthus, roses and hydrangeas. The tablescapes included floral centrepieces displayed in a collection of etched and cut crystal vases and tea lights suspended in tall crystal flutes. Adding to the romantic atmosphere was a custom LOVE marquee sign, a mirror that acted as a seating chart and a lush boxwood wall full of greenery and foliage.
To open up the dance floor, Landry and Elaine took their first twirl as husband and wife to David Gray’s ‘This Years Love’. “It was such a beautiful song with a soft beat, it wasn’t a common first dance song and we both loved it,” Elaine shares. “The reception was so much fun. Our DJ from Generation Events did a fantastic job. The music sounded great and the party went into full swing after dinner and didn’t stop until three the next morning.”
Landry Fields and Elaine Alden, July 14, 2014, New York City, New York.
Photography courtesy of Christian Oth Studio.
Ceremony and reception location: 620 Loft & Garden
Bridal gown: Inbal Dror from The Collection Bridal
Bridesmaid dresses: Jenny Yoo
Cake: Ron Ben-Israel Cakes
Caterer: Sonnier & Castle
Wedding planner: Sofia Crokos Events
Ceremony music: New York Ceremony Music
Reception music: Generation Events
Hair and makeup: Patrick Ta
Flowers: Renny & Reed
Stationery: RedBliss Design
The language of flowers dates back to the Victorian era when petals were given special meanings. For your bridal bouquet, why not adopt this age-old tradition by incorporating some symbolic blossoms into the mix?
We put together eight meaningful bouquets using some of spring’s most popular blooms, from tulips to ranunculus. See what your favourite arrangement says about you!
As Valentine’s Day nears, we once again find ourselves surrounded with an abundance of romantic ideas that could easily be worked into a wedding celebration. Heart-shaped desserts, especially, are popping up all over the web from ombré cakes to homey pies to whimsical candy cakes. Easy DIY garlands and buntings inspired by Valentine’s Day are also high in demand and we’ve found ultra-cute ways to incorporate these decor items onto your dessert bar. Think red, pink and white just won’t jive with your colour palette? Don’t let that deter you from borrowing some of these inspiring ideas–you can easily switch up the hues to have them complement your wedding day.
Jaclyn and Tyler met while working together at a restaurant in Jaclyn’s hometown, but it wasn’t until after she left for school that the two started dating. In June 2013, Tyler popped the question at the top of the Eiffel Tower. “He had the ring on his finger and just waited for me to notice it before asking me to marry him,” Jaclyn shares.
The couple chose an old Victorian mansion with beautiful grounds for their outdoor wedding. “Our ceremony backdrop was a wall of hand-made paper flowers, which were present in a great number of our wedding’s DIY details from the centrepieces to our ‘pick-your-flower’ escort cards,” Jaclyn says.
For Jaclyn and Tyler, a colour scheme with lots of vibrant shades was top of mind. “We wanted our day to be a reflection of out personalities. We wanted it to be fun and create the happiest possible memories for everyone,” the two reflect. Their celebration was filled with many activities to create a something-for-everyone kind of atmosphere. A heart-shaped piñata, a create-your-own sangria bar, and a photo booth complete with fun accessories were just a handful of things for guests to try.
To please their guests’ taste buds, dinner was set into staffed stations, with prime rib, rolled-to-order sushi, and pasta stations. “We also served up a variety of cupcakes and mini pies for dessert, and, of course, we had an open bar,” Jaclyn shares. “We even got to enjoy the food before dancing the rest of our day away.”
Jaclyn Mason and Tyler McNeill, July 5, 2014, Toronto Ontario.
Photography courtesy of 3Photography.
Ceremony and reception venue: De La Salle Oaklands College
Bride’s gown: Watters from Felichia Bridal
Groom’s tux: Calvin Klein
Cake: en Ville
Wedding planner: Tula Events
Music: Donovan Thompson
Hair: Candice Irons
Makeup: Michelle Reis
Bride’s bouquet: Blush and Bloom Flower Studio
Stationery: Stephanie Simmons (a friend of the bride)
Gillian Roberts and Luke Gibson will always remember their camp days at Kilcoo Camp in Minden, Ontario. After all, it was the place they first met. “It was an all-boys camp and I was working there as one of five girls,” Gillian explains. “Luke managed to shine brighter than any other of the 100 male staff.
For their wedding day, which would take place at Gillian’s family home in Singhampton, Ontario, the pair decided on a country-chic theme. To match their natural ambiance, Luke and Gillian chose to surround their evening with lots of white with touches of greenery and wood. The harvest tables at their reception were kept bare with simple runners, and the couple even found wine barrel bars to complete the rustic theme.
“The ceremony was the most special moment of the day,” Gillian remembers. “We worked with our officiant, Carolyn Taylor, to create a lighthearted, unique ceremony.” Personal vows were recited along with a reading of an excerpt of Ellen Degeneres’ commencement speech at Tulane University. A particularly adorable part of the ceremony occurred when Gillian and Luke’s poodle left her seat to join the couple up front and fell asleep on Gillian’s train.
Following their vows, the couple and guests headed to the reception tent. “I worked closesly with Paras Events and Happenings Party Rentals to find the perfect tent,” Gillian shares. “After many conversations, I eventually convinced Happenings Party Rentals to add a sail cloth tent to their inventory and it made its first debut at our wedding. The high ceilings in the tent hung with white Einstein bulbs provided the exact setting we were hoping for.”
In addition to their romantic mood, the couple ensured guests were entertained through their music options. “Luke worked for months with the band, Stereoflavour, the DJ, and the string duet to create the perfect acoustic vibe for the evening,” Gillian says. “The eight-person band, complete with a horn section, kept the dance floor full the entire night and we couldn’t have asked for anything more.”
Gillian Roberts and Luke Gibson, June 14, 2014, Singhampton, Ontario.
Photography courtesy of Verve Photo Co.
Ceremony and reception location: The bride’s family home
Bridal gown: Nicole Miller from White Toronto
Groom’s tux: Coppley Navy Tuxedo from Harry Rosen
Pies: Fruit of the Glen
Caterer: Men with Knives
Wedding design: Paras Events
Hair: David Hillis Salon
Makeup: Michelle Rosen for Judy Inc.
Thank-you cards: Rifle Paper Co.
Invitations: Snap + Tumble
Calligraphy: The Lettering Studio
Rentals: Happenings Party Rentals and Marvelle Events
Officiant: Carolyn Taylor
Jeweller: Bijoux Village Toronto
Wedding decor in 2015 is all about making a statement, from the colour palette you choose to the accents that will define your day. Grand entranceways, rows upon rows of candles and bold, green colour schemes are all on our radar for the year ahead.
Our first wedding decor trend: Grand Entranceways.
Can’t decide on which sweet treats to serve guests with at your reception? We don’t blame you! Thanks to the increasing popularity of dessert bars, candy tables, cake pops and other sugary delights, there’s quite a crop to pick from. While a tiered wedding cake is still a staple item, many couples are looking to feature more than one dessert option.
For 2015, we see brides and grooms getting more personal with their sweets. Custom lollipops will be huge this year as will macarons, which will make an appearance on nearly every sweet table. Nostalgic sweets are also making a big comeback – watch for the return of Hostess cupcakes, Twinkies and marshmallow treats of every description.
Our first wedding sweets trend: Macaron Bars.
Want wedding shoes are that extra-sparkly and fun? The winter holiday season always brings out the best crop of party shoes, so think about investing in your wedding footwear now. From glittering, bow-adorned pumps to jewel-toned peep-toes, there’s an endless amount of fancy footwear in the market right now. And for those who aren’t keen on heels, we’ve also tracked down five glittery pairs of ballet flats that are just as glamorous as any pair of sky-high stilettos.
Torontonians Renata De Thomasis and Aundrae Rollins met when they were teenagers. “Aundrae was on my dad’s soccer team and became best friends with my brother,” Renata explains. “He was always at our house and he eventually moved in with us.” Although they were childhood friends, the two drifted apart and didn’t reconnect until a New Year’s Eve party in 2004.
As a wedding makeup artist, Renata had seen her fair share of celebrations, so when it came to planning her own party she looked to unique places for inspiration. “We loved Dolce & Gabbana’s Fall 2014 collection with its warm golds, rich reds, black and a stained-glass-window blue,” Renata says. The couple, together with their event planner and designer Melissa Andre of Melissa Andre Events dreamed up a list of ideas to bring this colour palette to life.
“For my bouquet I went to Blush & Bloom and asked for a creation with red flowers,” Renata shares. “I absolutely loved it when I saw it—it was like walking around with a piece of art.” Ruby red shoes and black bridesmaid dresses also emphasized her motif. “For the decor, we left that up to Melissa and her team to help design, and we couldn’t have asked for anything more ‘us’ than what we got,” Renata confirms.
The wedding day began with a ceremony at The Spoke Club, located in downtown Toronto. The walk down the aisle was a special moment between the couple, not only because they were seeing each other for the first time, but also because they had placed a bet over whether Aundrae would cry. Dressed in a stunning Jenny Packham gown and cloaked in a custom-made cape from Valencienne, Renata knew the instant she locked eyes with Aundrae that he was about to melt. “I will say proudly I lost the bet,” Aundrae laughs. “I had so many emotions that day—excited, anxious and over-joyed about the whole moment of seeing her. When I saw her turn the corner with her parents, I was floored. To me, she couldn’t have been more perfect.”
For their reception, the couple selected Toronto’s Berkeley Church. “We chose that particular venue because of its character,” Renata says. “For the decorations, we added some modern elements and lots of florals. I loved seeing it all—it felt like we were in a very old European cathedral.” Upon arrival guests were greeted with rows and rows of tables topped in a custom blue-and-white-patterned decal, black-and- white lampshades wrapped in garlands and roses, and gold-and-black dinnerware topped with an ultra-luxe treat: Christian Lacroix notebooks for guests to take home. The pièce de resistance was the beautiful head table decked in candles, a lush floral arch and a five-tiered wedding cake.
To officially open the main reception room, guests watched from the mezzanine of the church as Renata and Aundrae took their first twirl as Mr. & Mrs. to “I Found My Everything” by Mary J. Blige. “We felt like we were alone, dancing on a stage,” Renata recalls. “It felt like our moment—and it was amazing to have our closest friends and family watching us.”
Renata De Thomasis and Aundrae Rollins, May 17, 2014, Toronto, Ontario.
Photography courtesy of Boyfriend/Girlfriend.
Ceremony location: Portland Room at The Spoke Club
Reception location: The Berkeley Church
Bridal gown: Jenny Packham from Powder Bride with a cape from Valencienne
Bridesmaids dresses: White by Vera Wang from David’s Bridal and Badgley Mischka from Holt Renfrew
Groom’s tux: J.P. Tilford, Samuelsohn and Tom Ford from Harry Rosen
Groomsmen attire: Coppley from Harry Rosen
Cake: Nadia & Co.
Ice cream sandwiches: Sweet Sammies
Doughnuts: Glory Hole Doughnuts
Favours: Melissa Andre Events
Wedding planner: Melissa Andre Events
Music: Michael Coombs
Bride makeup: Renata De Thomasis
Bridesmaids makeup: Janine Holmes and Patrick Rahme
Hair: Tony Phaam from Jie Prive, Nicole Graftner and Nina Puccio
Bouquets: Blush & Bloom
Floral decor: Melissa Andre Events
Stationery: Paper & Poste
Wedding invites: Momental Designs
Rentals: Chair-man Mills and Contemporary Furniture Rentals
Wallpaper: Melissa Andre Events
Photo booth: SmileBooth by Mango Studios
Ceremony violinist: Tino Pop
With family and friends scattered around the world, Jaime Holland and Carl Pocock always knew that an intimate destination wedding somewhere in the Mediterranean was in the cards for them. “We had been to Corsica together a few years before we got engaged and fell in love with it,” Jaime admits. “The island offers a perfect combo of outdoor activities, incredible history and gorgeous landscapes. We knew our friends and family would love the island as much as we did.”
To assist them with their French fete the couple enlisted the help of wedding planner La Fabrique à Rêves, based in Paris and Marseille. “We booked Hotel Palazzu in Pigna based off of photos and videos we saw from them,” Jaime explains. “Although it was great to see the place digitally, words cannot express how excited and overwhelmed we were to see it for the first time in person. It was even more beautiful than we ever imagined.” The hotel, an 18th-century family-owned mansion with lush and secluded gardens, was the perfect setting for their romantic escape. Jaime and Carl’s wedding ceremony took place at Cantina a Moresca, an ancient threshing circle site formerly used to separate grain. “It offered a truly magnificent view and surreal backdrop,” Jaime recalls. “To look out at the most amazing views—eagles were literally soaring overhead—and to see the man of your dreams surrounded by your closest friends and family was pretty incredible.”
As a personal detail, Jaime and Carl included a tribute to each other, followed by their vows, which were celebrated with tossed lavender confetti and champagne. “We had the reception in the back garden of the Hotel Palazzu,” Jaime says. Not wanting to take away from the beauty of the natural landscape, the couple kept the decor minimal, choosing soft pink and green accents. “My vision came to life with the set-up, done by a handful of talented friends along with our planners Èlodie and Delphine from La Fabrique à Rêves.”
As an interior designer, Jaime was obsessed with the little details: she designed all the day-of stationery and even drafted floor plans to ensure her vision would easily transform into reality. Dinner proved to be nothing short of magical with a single long table covered in linen and topped with green garlands, flowers in shades of pink and candles. Each guest’s place was marked with a card handwritten in calligraphy. “With the stone wall backdrop and to-die-for sunset, it couldn’t have been any more beautiful,” Jaime reminisces.
In keeping with the romantic atmosphere, the couple hired a local band, Buskers, to play in the background. “We discovered them on our first trip to Corsica a few years back,” Jaime explains. “We had such a pleasant experience that we had asked for their names. Two years later, when we were getting married, we miraculously tracked them down in Paris via Facebook. We were over the moon when they accepted our proposal to play at our wedding—their music set the mood and fit the scenery perfectly.”
Dinner and dancing carried on until two in the morning, when the bus arrived to take guests back to their accommodations. “It was a beautiful and warm night in Pigna. We enjoyed an incredible meal with our guests followed by an outstanding dance party, with tunes procured and mixed on an iPod Carl had spent a year preparing,” Jaime discloses. “Carl and I spent the night at Hotel Palazzu, only to wake up and find that everything had been cleaned up and put away, as if it was all a beautiful dream.”
Photography courtesy of Shannon Yau Photography.
Ceremony location: Cantina A Moresca
Reception location: Hotel Palazzu
Bridal gown: Elizabeth Fillmore
Groom’s tux: Hugo Boss
Caterer: Chef Michael Nordico at Restaurant Palazzu
Wedding planners: Elodie Decaix-Nicolas and Delphine Barallier at La Fabrique à Rêves
Hair and makeup: Britt Nijs and Andy Cheyne
Flowers: Caitlin Melling
Stationery: Designed by bride and printed at Jukebox
Scottish and Newfoundland traditions merged at Lisa Hannam and David Finnerty’s grand celebration. The two started the day off with a heartwarming ceremony in the lobby of Liuna Station. The groom sported a kilt and the bride walked down the aisle with a Chanel bag in hand. “It was one of our favourite parts of the entire wedding day,” Lisa shares. “Dave said you could hear a hush the minute we entered the room. The ceremony was light, short and fun. As we stood in front of our guests, we knew they were having a good time already, laughing and clapping.”
Lisa says she and David let the colour scheme of their venue dictate the decor for their day. Flowers were rich red, bright orange, muted purple, soft mint and yellow accented with silver and velvet brocade linens to go with the 1920s feel of the space. “I think the bold arrangements with the unique stands really gave the reception a warm, welcome feeling,” Lisa says.
The couple’s wedding also had an underlying Scottish theme. “Dave is Scottish, and so are many of the things he loves. His favourite Scottish artist, Charles Rennie Mackintosh, inspired many details, from the cakes to the favours; there were touches of his famous roses everywhere on our special day,” Lisa says.
Because Lisa’s family hails from Newfoundland a few east coast traditions were included in the celebration as well. “Screeching-in Dave and his family to be ‘honorary’ Newfies was one of the best moments of the evening,” Lisa laughs. “We had them do everything from eating a piece of Newfie steak (bologna) to answering a Newfie vocab quiz — it was a great standout for my background and family.”
Lisa Hannam and David Finnerty, April 12, 2014, Hamilton, Ontario.
Photography courtesy of Jean-Marc Robin at Ikonica.
Ceremony and reception location: Liuna Station
Bridal gown: Paule Ka
Cake: White Cakery Co.
Stationery: Joanna Kam
Groom’s attire: Burnett & Struth
Favours: Marie McMillan Guy and Henry Gibbons Guy
Music: DJ Emporium
Hair: Ivanka Grgic
Makeup: Sheri Stroh for Plutino Group
Flowers: La Jardinere