I first met Abbi & Ben a little over one year before their wedding day. As soon as we met and began to talk about the wedding, I knew they were my ideal clients. Abbi & Ben have hearts of gold; the details were incredibly important to them, but the most important was that their guests were comfortable and that they got time to spend time with their family and friends on their wedding day. I am very grateful to be able to help plan detailed weddings like Abbi & Ben's!
Abbi & Ben's wedding was an absolute dream to work on. Anyone who knows me in this business knows how I nudge my clients to think outside the box and make their wedding as unique as possible to them. Abbi & Ben left nothing unturned when it came to the details of their wedding day.
Let me walk you through being a guest at Abbi & Ben's wedding…..
Abbi & Ben were married at the beautiful cathedral of St. Anthony's of Padua church in Rockford IL. Keeping in mind the architecture and the character within the church Abbi & Ben decided to keep with the romantic elements of the reception. Working closely with Event Floral they tied in beautiful swag garland over the church doors, large floral centerpieces that adorned the altars, and simple bows to brighten the aisle. A simplistic elegant design was well thought out within the already existing beauty of the church. As the ceremony concluded guests lined the stairs of the church to congratulate the new couple with a ribbon wand exit.
As guests arrived at the Rockford Country Club they were greeted by a personalized hand sketched welcome sign, created on a beautiful romantic mirrored backdrop. Candles, florals, and lanterns adorned the sides of the walkway, inviting guests in as they approached the venue.
As guests entered the foyer, the warmth of the candles filled the room, a large focal centerpiece was displayed on the entryway way table giving guests a small glimpse into what to expect of the reception space. A memory table of family members was tastefully displayed, as well as a table of Abbi & Ben's parents' wedding photos. The details were impeccable.
The Cocktail Hour
The cocktail hour is one important element that seems to, sometimes, get lost. Cocktail hour is a time for guests to be first introduced to what they can expect from the wedding reception. Abbi & Ben made their guests feel relaxed with an open bar, signature cocktails, and gourmet appetizers. Thought was put into every detail from the floor length ivory cocktail linens, signature drinks signs, personalized napkins, the personalized guest book of Abbi & Ben’s engagement photos, down to the photos of Abbi & Ben displayed on the fireplace mantles of the ballroom. The pianist played the piano while guests were able to mingle, both in the ballroom as well as outside on the patio. Making guests feel welcomed, and adding in the extra details for cocktail hour is an important part of any wedding.
As the guests left cocktail hour they were escorted to a table that had cold poured bubbling champagne flutes waiting to assist them to their tables. Abbi & Ben wanted a unique idea to bring guests from the lively atmosphere of the cocktail hour into the transition of seating for dinner; we created the "sip & be seated" escort card table. Each champagne flute had small round table cards with the guests' name and table number. A refreshing and fun conversation piece that made finding their seat at the wedding a little more interactive and enjoyable.
As the guests entered the room, they were met with round guest tables draped with floor length ivory linens, gold chivari chairs were placed for guest comfort and aesthetics to the table setting. Guests found their names in front of their place setting, adding another touch of personalization to the guest experience. Glass chargers ribbed with gold dots were set with an iridescent blush napkin folded horizontally wrapping around the charger plate. Inside the napkin was a gold shimmer menu of what the guests would expect for dinner.
Abbi & Ben chose romantic colors of blush, gold, and ivory as their color palette. Table centerpieces were very detailed, with thoughts of each guest table kept in mind. Using both high and low floral pieces, in the center of the guest tables, made the room feel more intimate. They cohesively tied all of the areas within the space together. Both floral, and candles were used to decorate the tables, adding the final romantic detail for their guests. The table numbers were classically done in a blush rose gold acrylic tying in with the glass element on the tables.
A classic four tier wedding cake was placed on the dance floor. Fresh floral in blush and ivory tones cascaded down each layer of the cake, along with blush and gold wrapped ribbon.
A classic head table was draped in ivory linen, pillars of larger floral arrangements and floral bouquets lined the table. Layers of draped fabric with gold accent were delicately hung behind the head table, warming the space and creating the perfect focal point behind the wedding party.
The end of the evening
Into the evening the guest experience did not end. A faux sparkler sendoff was set up. Guests exited to the outside golf course where they formed a runway of sparklers for Abbi & Ben to walk through, as Abbi & Ben got to the end of the sparkler's fireworks burst into the air. A surprise firework show set up by Abbi & Ben for their guests.
Back inside guests were welcomed in with an open bar and a late-night snack of gourmet grilled cheese and tomato soup. The "sip & be seated" table was replaced by a wall of specialty donuts, a gift from Abbi & Ben as thank you for their guests to indulge in as they exited the reception.
The details that were left out until the end here are the most special of all. Abbi & Ben had the perfect wedding day, they were surrounded by so much love from their family and friends. Abbi's dad gave a welcome speech that would make every girl in the world cry, the undeniable love their family has for them is a gem to be treasured. Incredible thank you speeches by their best people standing by their side, and a heartfelt thank you from the bride and groom to their special guests. We laughed, we cried, and we even had experiences that I don't see at every wedding (grandpa is okay!). In the end, to Abbi & Ben, the most important things that matter are that their families and friends got to spend the day celebrating in their marriage to each other! Abbi & Ben cheers to many many happy years together!
The Very Important Vendor List:
St. Anthony of Padua Church
Cocktail Hour & Reception:
Rockford Country Club
Rockford Country Club
White Orchid Weddings & Event Planning
Floral, Linens, Centerpieces:
Event Floral Inc.
C. Tyson Photography
By the Dozen
Rock River Printers
Welcome sign lettering
Once Upon a Pedestal
A special thank you to the staff at Rockford Country Club for a seamless transition from cocktail hour to dinner with no extra wait time, and everything inbetween.
A special thank you to the team at Event Floral for helping to create this vision, and working so hard to always make it look easy.
A special thank you to C. Tyson photography for allowing us to relive the day through amazing photos