Category Archives: Event Planning

Oct 22, 2018

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Today we are sharing one of our most published weddings full of Fall details like lush greenery, seasonal blooms, and wooden elements. This ceremony and reception took place at the Montage Palmetto Bluff resort in the Lowcountry of South Carolina and was photographed by Corbin Gurkin.  The bride was a producer for the Dr. Oz show and based in New York… after searching many local and destination venues, they settled on Palmetto Bluff not only for the beauty and service the property offers, but also for the fact that all of the guests can stay together on property and enjoy all of the amenities.

ceremony-collage

Light showers began as the couple was saying their vows on a bridge overlooking one of the marshy creeks, luckily there were umbrellas on hand to protect guests and the bride and groom making their way down the aisle. The same Rabbi that did the groom’s bar mitzvah officiated the wedding ceremony, I love when couples are able to incorporate such special elements.

bride-collage

A simple and classic bouquet of Lily of the Valley was the bride’s hope and luckily we were able to get it for her considering the time of year! The bride wore an Oscar de la Renta mermaid style gown…

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Palmetto Bluff and Lettered Olive worked together to create the wedding day baskets full of freshly baked biscuits and homemade jam delivered to each of the guests…

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Cocktail hour followed the ceremony on the grounds surrounding the old house ruins. A champagne tower gives a nod to the easy formality of the event.

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A tent set under the oaks was the perfect dinner spot

dinner-collage

Long tables were anchored with wooden Dunes and Duchess lamps with burlap shades, providing a complimentary glow to candlelight.  Clusters of blooms in a mix of cement pots and silver vases provide depth and texture. The place settings were kept simple with colored linen napkins (that the bride and groom were able to keep for their home collection) and a sprig of fresh rosemary.

tent-details-collage

The head table was encased in an iron garden conservatory as greenery garland swags were draped throughout the tent. A grand piano was brought in for live dinner music. A “firewood” wall was created for the backdrop to the bar.

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Pretty lounge seating viognettes lined the dance floor.

dance-collage

The couple’s precious pup, Einstein was a guest at the affair.  We always try to hide all of the messy band cables and equipment with a stage partition, which as you can see makes a big difference in the photos! This one we capped with greenery and florals.

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The couple ended the evening with an after party dessert reception where the cake was cut and guests danced late into the wee hours.

10.22.18   |   TARA GUÉRARD
Event Design, Event Planning, New York, Photographers, Reception, The Lettered Olive, Uncategorized, Weddings | 1 Comment

photos by Corbin Gurkin 

What we like to call engagement season is approaching and many of you may be thinking of a wedding in Charleston soon. We hope that our guide to some of our favorite venues in Charleston can help give you some ideas of what we have to offer, and why we think we are so lucky to do beautiful weddings here. Our first, Fenwick Plantation,  is relatively under the radar and a little outside of town. A private historic home and grounds, born of Federalist architecture, the property still boasts a gorgeous avenue of Oaks. Here, we built an aisle over the reflecting pond and used the house for photo backdrops with a large tent on property for the rest of the reception.

 Photos by Liz Banfield and Corbin Gurkin

Lowndes Grove is one of the most popular venues in town, and rightfully so. Located in downtown Charleston, the historic plantation home has been restored to pristine condition. The grounds offer room for a tent (atop bluestone, offering a flooring option), and amazing untouched views of the Ashley River. We have done ceremonies on the front lawn, overlooking the river, under a large oak in the rear of the property, and sometimes just the reception- where the possibilities are endless. It’s pretty gorgeous for photos too.

Hibernian 2 Collage

Photos by Corbin Gurkin

The Hibernian Society in the heart of the Charleston Historic District has long been the scene of many Charleston parties… I like that it’s large enough to hold a sizeable party but it’s broken up as such that if you have a smaller group it won’t feel too huge. It’s got a great porch for creating seating areas that overlook Meeting Street, and the historic architecture lends it some unique value.

Ocean Course Collage

photos by Liz Banfield

The Ocean Course at Kiawah is a stunning site. I like the way a party can progress through different stages at this venue. From a ceremony on the golf lawn overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, to cocktails on the upper lawn and porches, to dinner in a ballroom, and then dancing under a tent overlooking the property, you are able to offer your guests so much variety!

Runnymede Collage

photos by Corbin Gurkin

A longtime favorite of many of our brides and us, is Runnymede Plantation. The home no longer stands, other than a few crumbling ruins, but the land and location along the Ashley River allow us to have fun and do whatever we want with decor, and we love that!

Boone Hall Plantation

photo by Liz Banfield

Finally, we’ve done quite a few weddings at Boone Hall Plantation in our many years, but this image from one we did  for over 1200 people really stands out! You can tent on the grounds, or use the ever popular Cotton Dock (where a certain celebrity couple was married) and where we held our Soiree Anniversary Party.. It’s extremely popular and books up fast, but you can see why.  It was also Allie’s house in The Notebook movie.

10.22.18   |   TARA GUÉRARD
Charleston, Event Design, Event Planning, Events, Parties, Uncategorized, Weddings | Comments >>
Oct 22, 2018

Tara Guerard Soiree by Liz Banfield

Sharing some dreamy images from Liz Banfield on this Wedding Wednesday. We loved loved working on this wedding, and have since stayed good friends with the family,  and since worked on many other projects together. So, that always makes my job even better, getting to create something for people you really care about! This couple had 1200 people at their wedding so creating a space large enough to accommodate that, yet still have it feel intimate was one of our biggest challenges.

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Tara Guerard Soiree by Liz Banfield

The girls all started with a day of lunch and getting ready at the bride’s family home. The same car that would take the married couple from their ceremony to the reception took the bride and her mother to the church, spending that last bit of time alone together, which is one of my sweetest moments from recent weddings.

Guest Bag Collage

Guest boxes were packaged perfectly using the custom monogram that Lettered Olive created for all of the printed materials.

Tara Guerard Soiree by Liz Banfield

Tara Guerard Soiree by Liz Banfield

The bride’s style was traditional but also super modern. We went with an ice blue and grey color palette. Lots of squared/block shapes, clear acrylic, a modern monogram, and minimalist furniture were all part of the design aesthetic.

Church Collage

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The couple was married at her family church, which is a charming historic church in the quaint Old Village of Mt Pleasant. The sanctuary was softened with a white carpeted aisle runner and bountiful flowers. The couple was married in front of a lush flower wall that hid much of the acoutremants found on an alter but not necessarily needed at a wedding.

Tara Guerard Soiree by Liz Banfield

If you can try to carve out any “alone” time to either eat, or just take a breather together as husband and wife, it’s a nice idea that I think you will appreciate after the wedding. This couple rode together alone from the wedding to the reception so they had a chance to discuss the emotions of the ceremony.

Tara Guerard Soiree by Liz Banfield

Tara Guerard Soiree by Liz Banfield

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The reception took place at Boone Hall Plantation. Guests arrived to white gloved treatment from servers lining the walkway with trays of champagne, water, wine, etc. A carpeted aisle was laid, so that women’s shoes wouldn’t sink into the sand as they walked into cocktail hour.

Tara Guerard Soiree by Liz Banfield

This was a special surprise to the bride and her family. She had bridal portraits taken before the wedding which, as Southern tradition has it, are typically displayed throughout the reception. So, we had these blown up and hung at the entrance to the reception tent surrounded by a massive flower wall.

Lounge Collage

Food Collage

Once inside the tent, large lounge spaces and food stations were strategically places so that guests would have no problems getting bites to end and finding places to sit. All of the food was pre plated, making it super convenient for guest to grab and go and keep lines down.

Cake Collage

A cake bar by Jim Smeal was a focal point in one are of the tent- 20 smaller cakes of different flavors were displayed around the centerpiece cutting cake to ensure that guests were all served and a variety of flavors were offered. The custom wedding monogram that was used throughout the printed materials was recreated in icing in a variety of ways and color combinations.

Tara Guerard Soiree by Liz Banfield

Edwin McCain (a close friend of the family) sang the Father/Daughter dance song. And, Josh Kelley (one of the couple’s favorite performers) performed for the crowd that evening.

Restroom Collage

You would have NEVER guessed, but this was the restroom trailer for this reception. With that many guests on the middle of Plantation grounds, we needed a lot of restrooms!  So, instead setting them off to the side as an unfortunate necessity, we glammed them up with draping, chandeliers, lounge furniture to rest your feet or wait in line, and the guest sign in (Aka “Grains of Wisdom” a take on the bride’s maiden name of Rice). We wanted to make sure that nobody missed the chance to give their well wishes to the couple, and this was a place sure to get the most traction!

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Tara Guerard Soiree by Liz Banfield

Of course, as the couple left, we had to bring in the traditional tossing of the “Rice”. However, wanting to protect the birds that inhabit the natural surroundings, we used Orzo pasta instead!

10.22.18   |   TARA GUÉRARD
Bridal, Bridal Style, Cakes, Charleston, Event Design, Event Planning, Flowers, Food and Drink, Photographers, Reception, Weddings | 1 Comment