Natalie Choi Events
event planning + design // CA
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Journal

Follow along on our creative journey.

How I Planned My Wedding: Design & Inspiration, Part 2

 

A Wedding Planner's Personal Journey

In last week's post, I wrote about how I decided to center our wedding's design around elements that reflected me and my husband. This week, I'll be going into detail about how the elements of my inspiration were incorporated into my invitation suite, ceremony decor, sweetheart table, place setting, and tablescape design.

Invitation Suite

After looking through pre-designed invitation suites on sites such as Minted and PaperlessPost without finding anything I liked, and not wanting to splurge on a custom-designed suite, I ended up designing my own. Creative Market was a great resource where I found the watercolor eucalyptus leaves as well as the font used in my invitation suite, which I then printed using Basic Invite. I kept our invitation suite very clean and simple, choosing to add interest through the textures of the paper twine, vellum, and custom wax seal from Back to Zero Co.

s t y l i n g  t i p s

Styling my own paper goods and details was important to me because I wanted to have my personal touch come through in our wedding photos. Plus, I couldn't imagine not doing any styling at my own wedding! I had so much fun working together with my photographer, Meiwen, as we styled flat-lays with silks and blooms. 

When styling paper goods, I like starting with the largest piece first, which is generally the invitation card, and then arranging the other pieces of the suite around the focal point. The eye tends to travel from the upper left corner of an image to the bottom right, so I placed my invitation cards (both packaged & just the card) in the corners. To add texture and achieve a cohesive look, I incorporated elements from the rest of the wedding: a hellebore & ranunculus used in my bridal bouquet, my husband's boutonniere, a bit of silk ribbon to create movement, and my rings to add a personal touch. 


Ceremony Decor

While I wanted to keep our ceremony decor simple, I still wanted to add a floral element that echoed the natural and effortless feeling of the English countryside. The beautiful oak tree we were planning to get married in front of was slightly off-centered with the lawn (as seen in the second photo), so my florist Sammy from Lambert Floral Studio suggested enclosing me and my husband in a floral installation to add a central focal point in our ceremony space. I loved the way the floral installation created an "altar", looking as if it had effortlessly sprung from the grass itself instead of being placed as a temporary fixture. We were also able to use the floral installation for our first look (as seen in the third photo), and it even lasted through our reception - long enough for us to take sunset photos in front of it! 

Wooden slatted chairs were chosen to add to the feeling of sitting in a garden on a relaxing afternoon. I love their cute charm! 

 


Sweetheart Table

As the party continued indoors for our reception, we wanted to bring the garden indoors as well. Sammy constructed this hanging floral installation for us that hung behind our sweetheart table, placed to look like it was growing from the wall. We dined surrounded by our closest friends and family, underneath overhanging flowers. 

We also pushed our sweetheart table to the side and grabbed some portraits in front of it! I love the way the floral piece instantly breathed freshness and life into a blank, industrial space. 

If it had rained on our wedding day (instead, it was over 80 degrees!), our rain plan was to have our ceremony indoors, with the floral installation as our backdrop. Gotta love a versatile piece!


Place Setting

We kept our place settings minimal, letting the simplicity and beauty of each piece shine - highlighting texture rather than a complex color palette. The plates I found from Encore Events Rentals had a slightly asymmetrical shape and a rounded rim, which added a modern and elegant touch. Gold-plated flatware in a clean shape added a bit of glam, and we chose to have the napkin placed under the plate and hanging off the table to avoid too many items crowding on top of the plate. 

For our paper goods, I sourced cotton handmade paper from Fabulous Fancy Pants on Etsy to create place cards, which were tucked under our dinner forks, and menu cards with minimal typography, which were placed on each plate. Delicate florals added a fresh touch, completing our minimal place settings. 

 


Tablescape

My husband and I wanted our reception to feel like an intimate gathering of friends and family around the dinner table, so it was important to us that the textures and qualities of our tablescape design be comforting and cozy. We placed banquet tables end to end and chose to have dinner served family style, which meant we had limited table space for decorations. To keep our tables from looking merely empty, I aimed for an intentionally minimal tablescape design. Larger floral centerpieces were placed at the junctions of tables, with smaller "satellite" arrangements spaced in between. 

Pale blue tablecloths with a linen texture were chosen from La Tavola to add organic texture. Soft candlelight from beautiful, glassblown votives rented from glassybaby added warm light to our reception space, completing our cozy dinner party. 

 

Next week's post will be all about wedding dresses: how I found mine, and how a few of my brides found theirs!


VENDORS

Photography: Meiwen Wang
Florals: Lambert Floral Studio
Candle holders: glassybaby
Linens: La Tavola
Rentals: Encore Events Rentals
Handmade paper: Fabulous Fancy Pants

all images by Meiwen Wang.