I can’t believe we finally get to share this Fall Fenwick Plantation wedding with you, now that the new Charleston Weddings Magazine is out on newsstands.  This is the 3rd daughter from a family that we have done all three weddings for, which I love because they were all so different and fun to design. This one is full of soft and feminine touches but using lots for rustic and natural elements. Thank you to Corbin Gurkin for all of the photos. Lettered Olive created a landscape scene reminiscent of the grounds at Fenwick Plantation (currently on the market if anyone is interested!), which was printed as the envelope liner on the classic letterpress invitations. Canvas “baskets” were printed with a handdrawn map of Charleston, with all of the weekend festivity locations noted. A custom printed puzzle also gave guests more information about the weekend events. Local snacks and treats filled the basket, including the groom’s favorite fortune cookies, but more on that later…

The bride wore a lace mermaid style gown by Eddy K with a keyhole back and a veil from BHLDN.

Bridesmaids wore gowns from BHLD, and the groom’s suit is from H Stockton in Atlanta.

Letterpress programs were fashioned into fans for the outdoor ceremony, luckily we had a warm beautiful day! After walking down a petal lined aisle with oversized magnolia pieces, the couple married under a magnolia and floral arch.

Cocktail immediately followed in the garden, where guests were greeted with hors d’oeuvres and cocktails named by the couple.  Going with the garden theme, a “planted” escort card display was designed. Galvanized metal tags were calligraphied with guests names and planed in a moss covered box. Dinner under the clear top tent featured a lovely head table with the palest pink linen, and curated tabletop of flowers, differing candles, and elements like antlers and other curios.

Afterwards in the lounge tent, both the wedding cake and a grooms cake were cut. The bride chose a chocolate covered confection by Jim Smeal displayed with a custom monogramed linen… Due the groom’s love of Chinese food, Jim also created a to go box cake with gum paste fortune cookies on top.

The after dinner lounge featured several different seating arrangements for guests to gather… In addition to our traditional bar setup, we built a beer tap wall for the guys… Loved this new addition and it was a big hit with guests… Featuring 4 of the couple’s favorite selections. 

After a night of dancing and mingling with friends, the couple departed to a sparkler send off, in a vintage British convertible.  Congrats Mary and Reid!

12.05.18   |   TARA GUÉRARD
Bridal Style, Cakes, Charleston, Event Design, Event Planning, Fashion, Flowers, Food and Drink, Press, Reception, The Lettered Olive, Uncategorized, Weddings | Comments >>
Dec 03, 2018

I just got back from an amazing girls trip to Cartagena Colombia celebrating by 50th birthday. I was overwhelmed by it’s details, colors, design, and food. Liz Banfield was along with me and never stopped capturing amazing photos for us, so here is a little rundown for anyone thinking about going visiting.

I was lucky for several great ladies to join me, including my BFF Nicki Clendening of Beetle/Scout Designs, one of my old college roommate, a former neighbor, and my social media manager… We chose to break the trip up into two separate experiences- several days in the walled city of Cartagena, and then a couple of days out in the Rosario Islands. While in the old walled city, we stayed at an Air BnB that was in a fantastic location near the top of the city.  I loved getting to my runs in the morning around the wall affording me a vantage point of the entire city.

We spent much our time in the actual walled city wandering around, exploring and shopping. There is so much vibrancy, and many of the balconies had lush greenery and bouguonvillea spilling over it’s edges.

Charleston has it’s share of color, but these bright hues and the way they were paired together was so photo perfect.

There was so much fresh fruit everywhere… Where our street food carts in the U.S. are mostly hot dogs, or grilled meats, etc. theirs are all freshly cut fruits… Definitely an intricate piece of local flavor.

We did take a half day tour on our last day in the city which took us through some neighborhoods outside of the walled city, including Getsemani. Loved getting to see how some of the areas outside of the “tourist corridor really are, and where the locals live. Our tour guide, Brian Munoz with Cartagena Concierge was fantastic… Another tour company of note is the Cultural Concierge

While in the walled city, it was almost like every building/boutique hotel we popped into or restaurant was a designer’s dream. So many details from painted murals, to intricate tiles, ironwork, lighting details, and landscaping, I could and did spend all of my time getting inspiration from this!

So much shopping… Colombia’s biggest shopping exports are gold and emeralds… However, the woven good, straw made jewelry, and handmade hats were some of our favorite finds.  There are also a ton of shops with lovely linen pieces. Some of our favorites were Casa Chiqui, St. Dom, and 

Of course my favorite thing to do is eat and drink and there was plenty of amazing opportunities for that… Even this little coffee shop, La Manana (bottom photo) right around the corner from our house was a treasure every morning. Their iced lattes and fruit bowl was a perfect breakfast every day.  Some of our other notable spots were Maria, Alma (which was connected to an amazing boutique hotel, Casa San Augustin), Candelaria in Casa La Factoria (this was so delicious, and our server didn’t speak any English, so we just had him bring us his 5 favorite dishes and they were divine! The scenery and design in this spot was amazing- see the photo above with the mural painted on the wall), and one of the best meals I’ve had anywhere was at Carmen.  If you ever go, this is a MUST.  We also discovered a drink that we couldn’t get enough of in the heat.  Frozen coconut creme, lime juice (their limes are more like lemons or key limes) and vodka or rum… Dreamy!

On our fourth day, we left the city by boat and headed out for the Rosario Islands.

After snorkeling in front of one of Pablo Escobar’s 0ld homes and seeing an underwater plane crash, we snorkeled a few reefs.  Then, we made it to our house, Almond Island. Our house was a structure in the middle of the water, all self contained but with water views from every open air angle.

Directly across from us was a small island, Aqua de Azul.  Every morning we watched the locals putter over on their modest fishing boats to greet people that come to swim and dine on the island every day. It’s a small island with a drink shack and a few people catching and preparing fish for lunch. It was amazing- freshly caught and grilled shrimp small lobsters and fried plantains… Such a little treasure.

 

 

12.03.18   |   TARA GUÉRARD
Fashion, Food and Drink, Gifts, Photographers, Pop Culture, Shopping, Travel, Uncategorized | Comments >>
Nov 28, 2018

I’m so excited to be able to finally share this gorgeous garden wedding we did for our former intern, Carleton. She married at her parents home in Birmingham, Alabama which featured the ceremony on the front lawn, and an alfresco style dinner overlooking the back. You know how much I love a home wedding.  Carleton is also the niece of Flower Magazine founder, Margot Shaw, who has always been such a great supporter of Soiree. See more of the gorgeous details over on Over the Moon. All photos courtesy of A Bryan PhotoLettered Olive worked closely with our client to make sure the simple and chic feel she wanted was delivered. 

Carleton chose the Greenhouse gown by another favorite friend, Lela Rose. For her it was the perfect mix of modern and classic…

While, the groom, Gael, wore a custom made Ralph Lauren tuxedo, the ladies were asked to chose their own dress within a color palette…. The look was so curated and worked perfectly with the “gathered greens” bouquet we did for each of the ladies.

The scenery, weather, etc was just so perfect for this garden ceremony. A simple arbor waited at the end of a blanketed aisle of rose petals. Greens attached to chairs acted as “pew markers”. Mini jute totes placed on each chair included blank note cards and pens asking guests to leave well wishes for the couple- in lieu of a traditional guest book. After a cocktail hour throughout the house and garden, guests make their way to the back lawn for dinner featuring family style tables and open air scenery.

Keeping in line with the simple at home feel, we wanted to do something different instead of an escort card display. Hatch Cove Designs and Lettered Olive worked together to create a watercolor illustration of the home and tables with the guests names in their places. This  also became a lovely piece of artwork for the couple’s new home.

The tablescapes married the French and Southern influences seen throughout the wedding.  Sweet garden roses and ranunculus were dotted with greens and fresh lavender peppered throughout. Handwritten and hand tied menus sat atop French lace patterened plates and 100 percent linen tablecloths.

After dinner guests enjoyed a lounge, bars, and dance tent with seating areas hidden throughout trees and secret spots.  To keep the intimate feel to the day, wedding cake was served inside the home’s dining room in petit comité. Before all guests finished their dinner, the couple gathered with their families in the dining room and cut the cake while a pianist played “La Vie en Rose,” a nod to the Groom’s French heritage. I think it’s so important for the couple to steal a few moments away from the larger crowds to soak in bits and pieces of the day here and there. After the cake cutting, a horn line (as a nod to the Southern heritage) came and lead the couple through the dining area to get guests up and out of their seats, and got them to the dance floor.  The first dance song, Can’t Take My Eyes Off of You by Frankie Valli was the perfect way to kick off the dancing.

The couple was sent off by biodegradable confetti and French “jut married” sign…

11.28.18   |   TARA GUÉRARD
Bridal Style, Event Design, Event Planning, Food and Drink, Photographers, Press, Reception, Uncategorized, Weddings | Comments >>