wedding tablescape

I am a hoarder.

I think we all know that by now.  That is pretty much how I ended up in this biz.  I love old stuff.  I love making stuff pretty.  I love collecting.

Now that we got that out of the way, let’s talk about my wedding centerpieces.

For months leading up to the big day, I collected silver water pitchers and teapots preferably tarnished.  A couple of antique champagne buckets as well.  In fact, I collected more than I needed.  Because I am a hoarder.

The shapes and sizes of the centerpieces alternated on each table with the floral palette being the commonality.

© Love Shack Photo

I already had a growing collection of vintage aqua blue mixing bowls.  This is my mantel from last summer proudly displaying the collection which was growing rapidly at the time.

Mixing bowl collection  and a ladybug

The color scheme was just right for our wedding so I was determined to incorporate my personal collections into our centerpieces.

We had 20 guest tables, 4 food tables and like 10 cocktail tables, I think.  In my mind, they all needed to be adorned with fresh flowers.  Arranged by me.  Large and small.

© Love Shack Photo

Was I nuts?  Maybe.  I like to think I came to my senses though when I came up with the brilliant idea of only arranging fresh flowers in half of the containers – mostly the silver pieces plus some blue ball jars which coordinated with our wedding invitation.

spring mason jar wedding invitation DIY blue green (5 of 10)

My solution to remaining sane was to arrange the other half of the centerpieces the weekend prior to the wedding.  I used flowering plants instead of fresh flowers since they would keep easily and that way I could divide and conquer on the centerpiece front.

© Love Shack Photo

Each mixing bowl was filled with pink flowering vinca, trailing vines and succulents.  Topped with moss and Cape May wine corks.

© Love Shack Photo

Bonus, most of these plants have been flowering in my garden all summer.  The wedding centerpieces were merely a layover for them!

Another collection of yellow McCoy planters in 3 sizes were displayed on the food stations.

© Love Shack Photo

So that left the larger vessels which were arranged just a few days before the wedding, packed up and then driven across state lines.  I think I successfully pulled of the task.

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Here’s a glimpse at what my kitchen turned floral shop looked like all in the name of DIY…

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That makes me happy.

So I am going to tell you the secret to pulling off arranging your own wedding centerpieces without going insane.

© Love Shack Photo

#1 Be Flexible

I was not committed to specific flowers, only a color scheme.  I arrived at the wholesale florist that particular day, 3 days before the grand event, and did what I do best.

Shopped.

Lilacs were in season so I started there and then built a springy palette around it.

© Love Shack Photo

Having worked in flower shops for years, I know the old requests of “no mums or carns.  No babies breath.”  I grew to dislike all of those common flowers during my florist tenure.  But guess what, I got over it.  I actually like these and as Carrie Bradshaw once noted, pink carnations are making a comeback.  Yes, still.  I’m fond of the hot pink minis so into the arrangements they went.

© Love Shack Photo

And the spin on mums?  Sunflower-esque pom pom mums.  Both these and the mini carnations are great filler flowers.

© Love Shack Photo

Moss covered pods were a nod to Ryan’s woodsy style.  Pink waxflower, lisianthus, sunflowers, pink tulips, variegated pittosporum, green status and more…

I took my selections home to my kitchen turned floral studio and got to work filling antique champagne buckets, ice buckets, ball jars, silver water pitchers, tea pots and a few smaller mason jars to don the cocktail tables.

© Love Shack Photo

#2 Be Organized

My to-do list was mostly completed at this point in the wedding planning process.  Had it not been, I don’t know that I could have pulled it off.

This tip is also two-fold.  You have to be organized from the beginning as it relates to collecting your vessels.  See: hoarding.

© Love Shack Photo

Honestly, DIYing these centerpieces was probably the most zen part of wedding planning for me.  Other than the spa, of course.

If you are a DIYing bride with some floral design abilities, I have faith that you can tackle your own centerpieces too!  If not, you can always ask your florist to use your own collected vessels and vases to personalize your centerpieces.

© Love Shack Photo

Next up…Ryan’s secret to getting the mini chalkboard table numbers to stand on their own.  And if you missed it, check out details on incorporating atlases into your tablescape here.

Centerpiece photos by Love Shack Photo

brilliant: flower show tickets

Have you been to the Philadelphia Flower Show yet?  It is the largest in the country, actually the world, I think.  Every year it is more brilliant than the last.  But this year, it really is Brilliant.  That is the theme.

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I will be instagramming my way around the convention center this evening taking in all of the English-themed delights.  I’ll also be paying special attention to the Designer’s Studio as well as the area around it.

Surrounding the Designer’s Studio seating area are themed pods.  The themes are Personality, Heirloom, Eco Chic, Neo-Tropic and Enchanted.  Floral designers have translated these themes into stunning arrangements and flower installations.

I am looking forward to checking out the Enchanted pod as it has been put together by my friend, Renee Tucci of Rhoads Garden and her partner, Darcie Garcia of Rich Mar.

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Renee and Darcie have also been known to compete in the Designer’s Studio along with colleague Heather Towne.  The audience does all of the voting in real-time on a flower show app.  This is totally entertaining to watch.  In fact, there should be a competitive reality show featuring floral designers…  No?

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Anyway, last year Renee won the competition.  And I hear Darcie won earlier this week in another competition.  I can’t wait to see who takes home the gold tonight.  There will be competitions going on all weekend at the Designer’s Studio.

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Let me cut to the chase.  I’ve got free tickets for you to hit the show before it ends on Sunday, March 10th!  Yes, a pair of complimentary tickets which is a $54 value.

This is a quick giveaway.  It will only be open until 5 pm this evening.  To enter, leave a comment on this post telling me your favorite flower.  Include your email.  I will draw a winner and alert you via email this evening so make sure you are checking in as I will need your last name too.  Your pair of tickets will be left at will call for you at the Pennsylvania Convention Center.

P.S.  There is almost always some vintage goodies to be found at the show!

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Oh and also be sure to check out the new workshop tab above regarding details for our Milk Paint Workshop Series…

your weekend plans

Hello!  I am back with yet another post.  I know.  I have been chatty this week, haven’t I?  It must be all of the coffee.  But anyway, I wanted to share some deets with you about what you should be doing this weekend.  These events are geared for the Philly area.  Sorry if you are not local but please scroll on for some seriously inspiring eye candy!

Have you made it to the Philadelphia Flower Show yet?  No?  Well you are in luck because it doesn’t end until Sunday evening.  Annnd I’ve got a big tip for you.  Go on Sunday and stay ’til the end.  That is the best time to shop the retail vendors because they will be practically giving away their remaining inventory of fresh flowers and plants.  Seriously.  If you are ready to inject Spring into your home, get started this weekend.  Catch the wave…

 

The Pennsylvania Horticultural Society hosts the Flower Show every March.  It is the largest flower show in the world! I know. Huge.  The theme this year is Hawaii: Islands of Aloha. Let’s see what 2012’s event has in store…

Oops, I think this man forgot his trousers.

 Anyway, you’ll feel like you took a day trip to Hawaii after walking around the convention center. 

And there are tons of ideas for your landscape.  Our yard actually already looks like this oasis…

We are hoping to scale it back this year but can’t decide between this quaint, rustic veranda…

Or this one.  We actually already have a patio set like this that just may get a paint job this year…

And why didn’t I think of a driftwood walkway?  You know I’m obsessed with driftwood.  It popped up more than a few times at the flower show.

And who doesn’t want a wall of lettuce?  It is so lush and green and healthy.  I want this!  It is the  perfect idea for urban gardeners with limited growing space on the ground.

Mmm, reclaimed wood wall!  Note to self, don’t forget the zinnias this year.

Whoa reclaimed wood wall AND galvanized flower bucket lighting.  Yes, please.

I’ll tell ya, my brain hurts from all of the ideas and there was a decent amount of vintage injected in the display.  Check out this fab aqua wagon.  I need this in my life.

Ok enough swooning. While I was at the Flower Show, I had the pleasure of watching one of my friends and renowned floral designers battle in a designers challenge. Renee Tucci is the Floral Design Manager locally at Rhoads Garden.  She threw down like nobody’s business. As much as you can throw down in floral design. I think there was even some trash talking going on. Yup, that’s how floral designers roll.

Oh my, only 10 seconds to go in the 30 minute competition full of surprise elements.

Does she look nervous?  They had to create a tropical arrangement to complement the Hawaiian theme with specific tools and materials that were not previewed before the competition.

There was definitely nothing to be nervous about.  Renee took home first place in the friendly competition!

I think you should call her up at Rhoads today and ask her to whip up an award-winning tropical arrangement for you.  Tell her Dana sent you.

Did I lose you yet?  I am full of pics and info today.  I really shouldn’t have had that second cup of coffee!  But while I’ve still got you, let me tell you about another must see event going on this weekend…

Head out to the ‘burbs for the grand opening of freshvintage on Saturday from 10-5.  I’m pretty thrilled to hear that one of my favorite vintage bloggers and sellers has gone all brick and mortar on us.  Colleen and her husband, Chris, have opened up shop at Highland Orchards in West Chester.  Their grand opening bash sounds like a blast complete with wine, of course.  Here’s a sneak peek of the new shop courtesy of freshvintage.  Check out more on her blog.

Now I’m exhausted just thinking about your weekend plans.  Let me know how it goes, mmm kay?