“I am digging gunmetal and cherry right now. The contrast speaks to me,” explains Kristin Banta, who founded her Los Angeles‒based Kristin Banta Events 12 years ago after realizing there was a need for designers willing to abandon the expected wedding traditions and formula. (Case in point: One of her recent weddings was a lavish affair inspired by Dante, Tolkien and The Odyssey.) “I am not a girly girl and definitely gravitate towards a more masculine design sensibility,” says Banta of her aesthetic. She grounds the cool gray with a supercharged bolt of red for a modern and sleek look, but is quick to point out that it is also about the textures. “Create dimension and depth by incorporating multiple finishes like mercury glass, a smoky mirror, stainless steel or pickled wood with patterned or textured textiles.” Build on this neutral, but layered,
base by adding pops of red through accents such as fruit or flowers. Think of cherries, apples, ranunculus, peonies, anemones or garden roses. “You can also incorporate color in the place settings, with the napkin or charger,” continues Banta, “or in your lounge vignettes with bright cherry pillows and lush throws.”
1. SOMETHING SWEET (above left) Step outside the cake box with this beautiful ruffled petal cake in dove gray fondant topped with a handcrafted red sugar-paste peony. Price upon request at Pasadenaʼs Fantasy Frostings.
2. RUNWAY READY (above right) Add a shock of color beneath your gown with these fierce Giuseppe Zanotti heel-less ankle-strap pumps in roso. $775 at Neiman Marcus in Beverly Hills.
3. CHERRY-PICKED (above left) Opt for a reception table centerpiece of fruit, like these ripe cherries in a silver eclipse bowl. Price upon request at r. Jack Balthazar in Pasadena.
4. WINE TASTING (above right) Fermented in stainless steel and cement tanks imported from France, the citrus-noted Mer Soleil Silver Chardonnay is a thoughtful addition to dinner service. $25.99 per bottle at BevMo in Studio City.
5. SPARKLE AND SHINE (above left) Famed Los Angeles stationer Lehr & Black created this elegant menu and table number with hammered silver metallic foiled paper and red offset printing on 100 percent cotton museum board. Price upon request at Lehr & Black.
6. SIlVER SCENE (above right) Banta keeps the place-setting palette simple yet dramatic by layering a Carrington saucer, gothic Silver bread-and-butter plate, Carrington salad plate and a gothic silver dinner plate atop a Hammered ruby charger. Dragonfly flatware and Calvin glassware seal the deal. Rental price upon request at Classic Party rentals in Culver City.