More than a one-night affair…

Inspiration Boards

Fashionably Fresh | Rehearsal-Dinner Dress

At Swann Soirées, we constantly seek to include personal touches and find realistic alternatives to create beautiful weddings. We aim for our clients to be excited about their day, every step of the way…to be encouraged to make planning decisions that fit them and be inspired to add elements which will reflect their vision for the celebration. I’ve learned over the last few months as part of the Swann Squad that this ideology carries beyond wedding planning and is applicable to every part of life… such as fashion!

Being a fashion student, I have to stay conscious about what I am wearing, besides, I’m responsible for keeping the Swann Squad up to speed in this area, we all love a good outfit…and shoes, bags, accessories, etc. Not to mention I cannot let our clients put their bridal party in outfits that are priced higher than an average plane ticket! It can be difficult for us to always keep up with trends, especially when there is something new and upcoming every season…but creativity is free and ideas abound, it’s all a matter of patiently finding what fits our style (and wallet!).

Currently, I am totally enamored by Spring 2011 fashion trends. Especially the recent “70’s Glamour” look influencing the fashion world! The lady-like pieces of lace, crochet, macramé, and items such as bell-bottoms and tassels are both marvelous and fun!

I decided to write a blog post that takes one of the newest delicious looks and re-creates it within the limits of an average budget- I am after all a student and simply can’t afford the $2000 Chanel bag pictured below. For my inaugural post, I was inspired by girly street-style that is perfect for a relaxed rehearsal dinner,  meeting with clients for a venue walk-through, or simply a day about town! Stay encouraged & be inspired!

xxo!

Intern Jess

Dress: Charlotte Russe (All Over Crochet Dress) $34.50 | Cardigan: Forever 21 (Longline Blouson Cardigan) $27.80 | Purse: Forever 21 (Quilted Shoulder Bag) $19.80 | Belt: Forever 21 (Twisted Buckle Wide Belt) $8.80 | Ring: Forever 21 | (Layered Floral Ring) $4.80
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Accessorizing for the Wedding Day | Yellow Headpieces

I am getting married in eight days!

As some of you may have noticed by my twitter posts, I am getting married next week!

Like every woman, on my wedding day I want to look stunning. I imagined my perfect look a few weeks ago, inspired by the color palette chosen for my wedding; Yellow and Orange.

I believe that a wedding day is happy and it should brighten up everything around you. I decided on the colors based on a picture of some beautiful Gerbera Daisies I saw in a magazine. It’s no secret I love Gerbera Daisies, some of you probably saw my Charmed by  Daisies Inspiration Board post based on the happy flowers right here a few months ago. The picture I saw gave me a feeling I wanted to emanate on my wedding day…I want that day to be joyous, charming and delightful.

My dress, designed and created by our just as delightful studio neighbor, Kit from Fiveloaves TwoFish, has yellow and orange accents…everything is focused around those two colors. When, it came time to accessorizing my look, I wanted the perfect pair of yellow heels but for weeks was unable to find the right shade, height, or style… then unexpectedly, I found really gorgeous pair that weren’t solid yellow but instead covered with orange, pink and a green flowery pattern- completely different from what I wanted at first, but I was smitten with them!

With the shoes bought it was time to find a headpiece. I’ve researched lots of websites for ideas with the intention of finding a piece I can make myself, but it’s so hard to decide or even focus with so many pretty & happy designs! During that hunt I found many wonderful yellow headpieces that I want to share with you today… you’ll see what I ended up with in just about a week!

Have you found your perfect wedding day accessory?

xxo!

Intern Ania

Top (left to right): headpiece 1, headpiece 2,

Bottom (left to right): headpiece 1, headpiece 2, headpiece 3.


FAB Friday: Honeysuckle Inspiration Boards

Everyday there is someone who decides what the new trends for fashion are going to be, but the decision doesn’t come from an original idea or a thought suddenly hatched out nowhere…

In the fashion industry, every trend is decided through prediction based on past trends. In other words, what goes out of style today will more than likely come back around at some point in the future. Color trends cycle exactly the same, and the color forecasters at Pantone decided that Honeysuckle would be the “It” color for 2011.

Last year’s color was Turquoise; the color of tranquil waters in a far away paradise where one could feel immune of debt & ill financial decisions. Who would have thought that the downed economy would influence color trends? Since it did, Honeysuckle was chosen to force society to face their problems rather than hide from them, as 2010’s Turquoise had done. Eager to help boost the economy, Honeysuckle forces society to respond confidently and have courage to face daily challenges…such as shopping!

No more drowning your sorrows in imaginary Turquoise Caribbean waters! In Pantone’s words, Honeysuckle is a “Courageous, Confident, and Vital color…A brave color with nothing everyday about it.” We like it!

The “It” color of 2011 can be described as an orange sherbet shade of pink, retro, and uplifting, much like a color you would have seen grandma wear in the 1950’s. It was used as a splash of wall color for home décor (accent wall anyone?) as well as in appliances… after all the 50’s was the era that made being a domestic goddess trendy and cool with it’s technological advances such as microwaves and Tupperware, in none other than Honeysuckle pink!

You will see Honeysuckle used for  fashion, cosmetics, wedding apparel, paint, home interiors, packaging and even a visa card! We highly recommend all trend-setting brides to hop on the bandwagon of a Honeysuckle-hued wedding as it takes over the world…don’t know about you, but we are perfectly fine living in a pink world…

xxo!

Intern Jess & Brenda


Happy Holidays!

Merry Navidad!

2010 has been an incredible year! It’s got a few more days left too… I just know it will be magnificent! In a whirlwind, 2011 will be here- I don’t want it to get here without saying a few things to all of you:

Thank you to our amazing family, friends, and supporters for your faith and confidence in Swann Soirées. We are who we are and where we are because of YOU!  A very special Thank You & Shout Out to our military & their families; We love, appreciate, and believe in you, not a single day goes by that we aren’t proud of you and your sacrifice.

May the spirit of gratitude and grace of humility find us in good health all through the holidays and new year!

xxo!

The Swann Squad: Brenda, Megan, Sherry, and Interns Ania & Jess

 


Herb Infused Wedding Inspiration Board

Although my favorite holiday, Thanksgiving, has looked over its shoulder and said “I’ll see ya next year,” the images and smells of my sage butter roasted turkey, thyme andouille sausage stuffing, rosemary red potatoes, and lavender pound cake are still lingering in my mind…and definitely on my waist. When you’re a foodie, like me, there was no denying what I’ll be sharing on our  Inspire Me Monday blog post: An herb-infused wedding!

There’s so many fun, creative ways to put together a herb themed wedding! The scent of rosemary, sage, basil, mint, thyme, and lavender can invigorate the senses visually and aromatically. As the board suggests, bundles of herbs can serve as a name or place card holder. For favors, the options are limitless! You can concoct a salt and herb rub or seasoning. If you’d like a sweeter approach, get a little gourmet by marinating herbs such as rosemary or thyme in honey and include a food or drink recipe that incorporates your personalized gift. Herbs are a beautiful and surprising addition to floral arrangements as well; centerpieces, boutonnieres, bouquets, and even ceremony decor.

During my wedding planning, at the consultation with the florist, we discussed how I LOVE herbs and wanted a natural look to the arrangements and bouquets. I shared with her how I envisioned the dinner napkins to have fresh sprigs of rosemary tied-on with colorful plaid ribbon….the ribbon complimented the flannel shirts worn by the  groomsmen. Our venue was surrounded by pine trees that hovered over a beautifully manicured garden area. I wanted  my flowers to embrace the allure of our natural setting; therefore,  elaborate floral decor was unnecessary. The florist did an amazing job with my requests! There were sprigs of sage, mint,  thyme, and lavender accenting the gorgeous bouquets, and at the ceremony, bundles of herbs wrapped in twine designated family seating.

Foodie or not, flirt with all sorts of herb inspired ideas for your wedding…it can make for a tantalizing experience for your guests!

Happy Wedding Planning and HAPPY HOLIDAYS!

xxo!

Sherry

P.S. – Remember that these ideas are not only inspiration for your wedding but for your everyday occasions too. At my 30th birthday luncheon, I baked a bag of lavender shortbread cookies for all of the guests to enjoy. They were yum yum!

Sources:

Mint Bout | Herb Centerpiece | Peach & Rosemary Sprtizer, Herb Infused Honey, Herb Place Card, Rosemary Sea Salt Favor


Thursday Details: Inspired by Ring Pillows

Since becoming part of the Swann Squad and in planning my own wedding, I’ve come to realize that there are many more details to decide on that I originally thought, one of them being the Ring Bearer’s pillow.

Who would have thought it wasn’t as easy as finding a small, pretty, and  plush pillow?

While a traditional ring pillow is beautiful, there might be something else that better fits your personality or color palette. As I was researching the options I found a so many choices! Ring bearer pillows have really become a sweet accent that can enhance the tone of your wedding… elegant, modern, chic, and from the traditional to the very unique. Like these botanical flower ring cushions and holders that look like they’re from a fairytale:

Adding a bit of personalization, you can use something like this vintage inspired doily “pillow” decorated with paper flowers, I liked this one, it’s very romantic! For an autumn wedding, why not to use a small white pumpkin, and better yet, how about a toy, like the truck (pictured) or even a doll or bear to entice the ring bearer to participate!

What sort of ring pillow do you plan on using for your wedding?

xxo!

Bride-to-be Intern Ania

 

 

SOURCES

Traditional Pillows (top) Left | Right | Center –  Botanical Holders Doily | Pumpkin | Truck


Inspire Me Monday: Polka Dots & Ruffles

Living only four blocks away from Balboa Park, I think I’ve explored every inch of it…and EVERY inch of it offers endless inspiration. During one of my night walks, I found myself staring off into the Sculpture Garden, located in the San Diego Museum of Art. The unrestrained and expressive sculptures reminded me of my childhood and of my attempts at art: crayon doodles that could have been used as inkblot tests, Lego structures that never could stay upright, and Play-Doh moldings that made my parents’ heads tilt in confusion – they didn’t know whether to praise my work or question it.

Peering in through the gates, I was convinced that one day, I’d have a bride and groom who wold want a youthful, playful reception. At this fun and interesting outdoor venue where polka dots, ruffles and colorful candles would adorn the tables, cotton candy would be waiting for you at your seat, an ice cream truck stationed outside would be stocked with ice creams and candies from yesteryear, and midnight snacks of In-N-Out burgers and fries would assure everyone goes home with happy full bellies. I think the kid in everyone would surely come out to play!

xxo,

Sherry Tarrant

Sources:

Green & white polka dot fabric for napkins | Chloe ruffle linen from Wildflower Linens for tabletop overlay | Paula Rae Florae bouquet wrap | In-n-Out burger image | Wedding Cake | Ruffle Ring for bridesmaids | Vintage tote box for gift cards | Bouquet | Bridesmaid Dress | Boutonniere | Escort Cards | Colorful Candles for centerpiece | Fun encrypted Save-the-Date cards | J. Crew Wedding Dress


Thursday Details: DIY Fortune Cookie Favors

Looking for an edible wedding favor but don’t want to do the standard truffle-in-a-box or tin-o-mints, how about fortune cookies???

While it may seem that you’ll need to have a certain “theme” in order to use the fortune cookies, that’s actually not the case because you can customize them to be in your wedding colors and even have custom fortunes inside. We found a website that even allows you to order the cookies in a specific color!

But because it is DIY THURSDAY, we will assume you want to bake them yourself (ok ok, or order them plain if you don’t want to bake) then stock up on sprinkles, icing, and other confectionary delights and viola! Decorate an afternoon away! Wrap up the pretty cookies in cello with ribbon, add a little tag, and your guests will enjoy a unique treat on your wedding day.

This is how to make it happen as per DIY Central:

(Makes 6 cookies..You will need to multiply the recipe depending on how many cookies you will need.)

  • 2 egg whites
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 4 Tbsp melted butter, cooled
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp almond extract
  • 1/2 tsp lemon extract
  • 2 1/2″ x 1/2″ fortune strips (Already printed, cut and ready to go!)
  • Optional: Food Coloring
  • Optional: Chocolate and sprinkles/nuts/colored sugar (SugarCraft has a huge variety of colored sprinkles!)

Let’s get baking!

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a cookie sheet thoroughly.
  2. Whip the egg whites on low speed until light and foamy. Blend in the sugar and continue to beat until soft peaks form.
  3. Pour in the melted butter, flour, salt, and extracts; mix until well combined. If you want to color your cookies add a drop of food coloring to the batter and mix well!
  4. Drop a tablespoon of the batter onto the prepared cookie sheet. Using the back of a spoon, spread the batter evenly into very thin 3-inch rounds. Alternatively, use the lid of a jar with a 3-inch circle punched out as a template, pour the batter in the ring, and remove. Because you must work quickly to shape these cookies, bake just 3 at a time.
  5. Bake for about 5 to 8 minutes or until the edges are a light golden color.
  6. Optional Step – Once cooled you may decide you want to dip your yummy cookies in chocolate and then either roll the dipped cookies in fun sprinkles, crushed nuts or colored sugar. If this is the case melt your chocolate in a double boiler or microwave following the package instructions. Then just dip, roll and place on a piece of wax paper to cool! Sooo delicious! Plus, you can further customize the cookie favors to your wedding theme by dipping them in colored chocolate to match or rolling the dipped cookies in sprinkles or sugar to coordinate with your wedding.

This what the final product {could} look like:

Tags you could make for the cello bags


Enjoy making this fun & unique wedding favor! Maybe we’ll get started on making some too… send them off to Brenda’s adopted sailors on her husband’s ship…

xxo!

Intern Ania

Photo Credits/Sources Cookies: Left, Middle, Right & Tags.


Inspire Me Monday: Think Pink!

October is not only known for the ghosts, goblins, and trick or treaters that come out for Halloween, it has also become a nationally recognized month for the 2.5 million survivors of breast cancer. Today’s “Inspire Me Monday” is dedicated to the tenacious resolve of all those who have  courageously fought this disease in one way or another, and supported the seemingly endless battle that has become the second leading cause of cancer death for women. To all of you we say; Thank you for being an inspiration of strength, beauty, and hope.


Inspire Me Monday

Today’s Inspire Me Monday starts with an idea for home decor project that hit me out of the blue, then turned into a creative wedding idea…

My husband, Jamie, and I have been in our new condo over five months now. When we first moved in, I painted a wall in our bedroom a cool, soothing hue of blue….

As you can see, the wall is cool and calming BUT still bare because I’ve been waiting for just the right “thing” to hang on it. It finally did during a recent Lake Tahoe trip last weekend! It was a GORGEOUS day for hiking in Emerald Bay, Jamie and I had the trail all to ourselves. The luscious shades of green were memorizing…and THAT’S when inspiration struck down on me. With Jamie unaware, I fell back to create a little distance between us and I began snapping away.

These photos would be perfect matted, framed, and hung in a single horizontal row to finally add some interest to our blue wall.

Now let’s translate this idea into something for your wedding! While the most common time for you and your fiance to be photographed (a lot) and consecutively is your engagement photo shoot, why not find a series of photos you’ve taken during your relationship… maybe from several different birthdays or different trips to the same place, heck, why don’t you take your camera on that next little getaway you take? You choose!  The photos just have to be the reflection of who you are as a couple. My home project is especially meaningful for us because Lake Tahoe is one of our favorite places in the world. So now, every time I look at our wall, I reflect on all the memorable times we’ve shared in there.

After your select the photos (or coordinated the engagement shoot)-  mat and frame the photos to use them as your “guest book.” No, this isn’t a new trend or anything you’ve not seen before, but like with everything in YOUR wedding, this little detail is for you to keep & enjoy for years to come- so it doesn’t matter if it’s been “done,” it’s all about adding those personal touches that makes it Yours.

Pay special consideration of how thick to mat your pictures in relation to how many guests you plan to have at your wedding; you want to make sure there’s enough space on the different frames for all of your guests to sign. You don’t want your matting to be too little, otherwise, you’re guests’ notes will be crowding your pictures. Equally, you don’t want your matting too big or else you may end up with gigantic gaps between their notes. This can be a DIY project (Michael’s always has GREAT sales on their matted frames), or you can get the pictures professionally framed. When choosing how to display your series of pictures be sure to consider the look and feel you are trying to achieve in the room.  If your space reflects a modern feel, go with simple frames that have clean, straight lines. However if your space has a traditional feel, you may want to consider a more ornate, decorative frame. As far as the matting goes, you can get creative with this too- don’t limit yourself to a white or ivory mat. If your pictures and frames allow it, consider a dark color like navy blue, hunter green, black even, then use white, silver, or gold pens for your guests to sign with and PRESTO! Now you’ve got something artistic and memorable to decorate your home with .

Have so much fun putting yours together!

xxo!

Sherry