Brandi and Christian's bold emerald green and gold wedding was truly one to remember.
Hollywood Glam Meets The Roaring 20's At This Wedding Celebrated At Downtown Los Angeles' Cicada Club
Danielle Silver, a wedding planner at Orange Blossom Special Events, met Bryce Niemann during her first month at Arizona State University. Four years later after graduation, the couple moved to Los Angeles together. After dating for eight years, Bryce made it official with a proposal at the Japanese Gardens in Van Nuys. True to the advice she routinely tells her clients, Danielle and Bryce began their planning by picking the venue first. Downtown Los Angeles' Cicada Club with its old Hollywood glam. The couple picked details that enhanced their venue, which was roaring 20s glam meets romance and art deco. Tall tulips which her florist Susan from Peony & Plum executed perfectly to match the venue. Some other unique elements included black napkins with golden lettering that had facts about the couple and white dance floor to make the elegantly dark room pop. As a wedding planner, Danielle picked all of her favorite vendors she knew she could trust. Her biggest advice for couple on their big day is, “Do not sweat the small stuff, think of the bigger picture and enjoy every second.” Danielle’s dress was custom made by Aria Dress and she paired them with glamorous magenta Kate Spade shoes.
Armed with her experience on both ends of the aisle, as a planner at Orange Blossom Special Events and a bride, Danielle shared with us her firsthand experience and advice on planning the perfect wedding.
So how does a wedding planner plan their own wedding? Most people already have an idea in mind when it comes to planning their wedding, especially in the digital age, when so much information is instantaneously available on sites such as Pinterest. I have talked with and advised countless brides through the process of focusing on their wish list, taking into careful consideration their “must haves” in conjunction with their budget. Together, we determine the venue, how to best execute the couple’s desired theme, color choices, flowers, decorations, food, beverages, and entertainment. However, when it came to me, I struggled with most of the issues I easily handle for others on a daily basis. I wanted to choose a theme that not only would reflect our relationship but also one that would endure a year later when the event arrived as well in fifteen years when I could show our children, assuming we have children and they care about their parent’s wedding.....another one of the little girl’s fairytale wedding dreams!
CHOOSING A THEME: For me, the options felt overwhelming. Perhaps we would go rustic, romantic, eclectic, timeless, unique, traditional, or all of them! The question came down to what kind of wedding did we actually want? More importantly, what kind of wedding did we not want? Having worked in LA on everything from a $5,000 wedding to well over a $400,000 wedding, I had seen it all. I wanted the extravagance of an expensive wedding, but I did not have necessarily have the budget to back it up.
So, what’s a wedding planner to do? I did what I always tell clients: pick a venue first! That will really help define your style. A beach setting does not easily lend to a gothic theme, for example. For us, the Cicada Club in Los Angeles’s historic district made the most sense. It's in an old building in the heart of downtown, with a Great Gatsby meets art deco, meets a dark and romantic vibe. We were so thrilled this was our wedding venue as it spoke to us immediately. And, best of all, it made the rest of the visual planning easily fall perfectly in place. Our theme and look were defined by our venue, which is often the case.
THE DRESS: Did you know that custom designs often end up costing the same as a traditional off the rack wedding gown? I did, because well, it’s my job to know that. Which is why I was fortunate enough to work with Tak at Aria Dress to design a custom wedding gown for our big day. Most brides automatically think of stores when it comes to wedding dress shopping, but working with up and coming designers to custom design a dress can not only be an exciting, personalized part of your wedding, it can also add a level of customized uniqueness rarely found in weddings.
THE FLOWERS: I absolutely love flowers! I have seen just about every color and style throughout my career and I wanted to do something gorgeous and at the same time unique. I dreamed of the concept of messy tulips. My florist, Susan of Peony and Plum, achieved the most amazing tall centerpieces that fit the theme and venue so well. My bouquet was jaw-dropping. I don’t think I put it down for the first four hours of photos, I loved it so much!
THE OVERALL LOOK: Always choose elements that build upon and enhance your theme! Our colors were black, gold and white. We had gold charger plates with black napkins, designed menus and a white individual flower for every setting. Underneath it all, we had black sequin linens. To highlight the amazing centerpieces, we had pin spot lighting. Ghost chairs were a must for me. The first time I saw them, I knew I wanted them at my wedding, wherever it would be. Finally, we had a white dance floor to help the make the elegantly dark room pop. I absolutely loved the look of the event!
THE LOCATIONS: We took photos at LA Athletic Club Hotel, Oviatt Penthouse, and Cicada Club. All three venues are on the same block and were in the same theme, old Hollywood in Downtown LA.
THE PHOTOGRAPHER: I knew before being engaged that Callaway Gable captured my favorite style of wedding photography. Once we started planning our wedding and picked our venue, it was apparent that we did not want to select anyone else. They captured our day beautifully!
ADVICE: Make a budget and decide what parts of your wedding are most important to you. Do you want to splurge on the flowers? The venue? You cannot splurge on everything, so decide what elements will make the biggest impact and are most important to you. Hire wedding vendors that you trust. If you are able to convey to them your vision and trust them to do their job, your wedding will be stress-free and more beautiful than you could have imagined!
Have a wedding planner, or at least someone to jump in the month of your big day. You spend so much time, energy and money planning your big day. Your job should be to enjoy every second without thinking about any details. Let someone else handle that. This is one of my favorite parts of being a wedding planner, I get to watch my clients fully enjoy their wedding day. Don't sweat the small stuff, think of the bigger picture and enjoy every second. Your wedding will fly by faster than you ever could have imagined.
Just have fun, be silly, live in the moment, enjoy yourself, and the fairytale wedding you have spent years dreaming about will become a reality!