Event Vision: Coney Island/Carnival Wedding Cocktail Hour, Part 2

coney island vintage carnival inspired wedding

And we’re back—with more Coney Island/Carnival inspired goodies for your wedding.  We’ve already talked about food and drinks, let’s talk about color!

wedding carnival color palette

 

I love these colors for this type of wedding—  Pantone’s  Fiery Red (18-1664 TC), Blazing Yellow (12-0643 TC) and Cyan Blue (16-4529 TC).  They are fun, punchy and exciting. While they are vibrant, you can use them sparingly and purposely, such as in your flowers, linens and food.  What about your paper needs for your wedding?  Invites, menus, escort cards, and other fun things can really carry this theme through your event.

 vintage carnival invitation by two trick pony

 I love these vintage beauties, the Coney Island 1896 Wedding Invitation ::  From Royal Steamline’s  Etsy Shop on the left, and Two Trick Pony’s vintage carnival wedding invitation.  These are fun, but elegantly crafted which doesn’t make your event look it will be at Chuck E. Cheese. The Vintage Glam Blog offers Free Carnival Printables which would make for great accessories at your event.  You can use tickets as your escort cards as well create custom popcorn and peanut bags with your names or wedding logo.

postcard-historyamusementparkscom

 If you want to opt for something non traditional for your wedding guest book, look for vintage carnival or Coney Island post cards for your guests to sign like this one from Amusement Park History or these 1949 Coney Island postcards.  Your guests write a message on the back and your designee can send them to you after your honeymoon.  It’s nice to receive them in the mail  and see the love from your wedding guests!

 orange zinnias flowers for carnival coney island wedding lRedCheckLg

These arrangements of zinnias,  paired with orange abutilon (flowering maple), chartreuse nicotiana, acid-green jasmine, and two kinds of berries: orange-and-yellow viburnum in white-glazed porcelain pots and gold-interior votive holder, from Treillage, treillageonline.com. (via Brides.com, photo by Victor Schrager, casual, but striking for this type of event.  The red and white gingham linen from BBJ Linen are prefect for casual cocktail tables or to cover hay bales.

wheelochance game fatcats game party4funcom milk_bottle game

What is a carnival without games?  Your local rental company may have fun games featured above like Wheel O’ Chance, Fat Cats, and Milk Bottle Toss which can make for great fun at your cocktail hour, reception or afterparty. Your wedding guests will be engaged and have a good time.  Don’t be concerned if you aren’t the focus of attention—nothing could replace you!

Of course, you cannot forget about the photobooth!  I love Our Labor of Love’s Smilebooth because it is interactive and so much fun (can’t you hear them laughing?).  Incorporate fun props like sunglasses and hats, but remember to stay true to your theme with fake beards (A la The Bearded Lady),  fake snakes,  swords, and masks.  Have a ball!

With all of these fun ideas, and great inspiration of at Green Wedding Shoes, there is so much to plan and design. Whether you choose to incorporate one or all of these ideas, your party will be an awesome party to remember.

 

 

Event Vision: Coney Island-Carnival Wedding Cocktail Hour

vintage coney island carnival wedding ideas

I just lurv a Coney Island/Carnival inspired party.  There is something that is so nostalgic and fun about these types of parties and weddings that make it turn into an experience instead of just a party.  That’s why I’m not just going to give you eye candy, I am going to tell you the story behind this event vision.  Even if you are not 100% sold on doing an entire wedding based on this theme—it can be great for a cocktail hour or final hour of your wedding—or even an after party!

Food

Carnival food should be part of the food pyramid.  Pretty much convinced of that—but since it’s not, here is a fun way to bring back your favorites in a glammed up version  for your wedding guests.

cotton candy martha stewart wedding favor food funnelcake-dineanddishnetgrp_edr_mini_franks_sz2-yum sugar

Cotton candy, funnel cake and hot dogs make great treats to pass around as your party winds up or winds down.  The cotton candy from Martha Stewart, is colorful but packs much flavor.  Mini funnel cakes or even a funnel cake bar with various toppings (whipped cream, ice cream, fruit and gourmet sugar toppings) can be fun and cure any sweet tooth ailment (or cause one!).  These mini hot dogs from Yum Sugar can be paired with gourmet sauces like chipotle ketchup or honey dijon mustard.

french fry shooter hors d'oeuvres bridescafe french fries in holder with newspaper

What’s a carnival with out french fries? A travesty!  The first picture from The Bride’s Cafe is an upscale display of french fry shooters, which I adore.  Nevertheless, I am still captivated by this vintage version I found over at The Cinderella Project.  The only thing that would top it would be to personalize the paper that comes with the fries—shoot for making your own personalized newspaper with your names and life events for a realistic, personal touch.

Popcorn Bar at Wedding

Ever since I spoke at the Eventology conference this year, I have become obsessed with Garrett’s Popcorn (Thank YOU, Katasha!).  And nothing could soothe your soul more, end world hunger and solve the health care reform debate than a popcorn bar with Garrett’s.  There are other companies that provide a myriad of flavors and seasonings, but if you want to stay true to your carnival theme, opt for caramel and butter only served troughs—I mean decorative vases and containers.

Snow cones by Fresher than Fresh

Another favorite?  Snow Cones.  But not just your run-of-the-mill snow cones, I’m talking about Fresher Than Fresh snow cones.  Made with natural flavors and fruits, they are sure to be a hit.  Featured above are clementine, blackberry lavender, agave hibiscus, lemon prickly pear, and ginger rose!

Drinks

Drinks can be made just as much fun as the food!  In addition to your regular bar, add some fun like these mini root beer floats found on the San Diego Food Stuff blog :

Mini root beer float shooters

Of course, what would this party be without a signature drink?

caramel apple martini-thegoodlifeinthecity

Check out these caramel apple martinis by Good Life in the City.  Perfect mix of tart and sweet, as well as reminiscent of the all-time carnival favorite.  FYI, traditional candy apple mix makes a great candy apple martini as well.  Here is the recipe for the caramel apple martini:

In a cocktail shaker filled with ice, add ½oz vodka, ½oz Sourz apple liqueur and ½oz butter ripple schnapps. Shake and strain into a Martini glass rimmed with caramel syrup.

Okay, luxelings—we’ve talked food and drink;  stay tuned as we start incorporating other fun details!

Event Vision 101: Color

eventvision101

Color is life.

 

Color is life’s method of non-verbal communication, with symbolism and meaning.

 

You could choose colors because they have a deep meaning for you or just because they are pretty.  However, choosing colors for your wedding will be a very important choice and will dictate the design of the event vision.  Color means different things to different people and cultures.  If you plan on incorporating traditions that reflect your heritage, take notice as to what colors are prominent and meaningful.

 

Let’s discuss color basics:

 

 color wheel

 

Contrasting/Clashing Colors—despite the name, working with these colors doesn’t necessarily cause an eyesore.  They are called this because they sit across from each other on the color wheel.  This can create a very dynamic color combination with depth and contrast.

Complementary Colors—On the color wheel, these colors are separated by another color.  When paired together, it is said that they can cause an undesired “visual vibration”, however when integrated with another color, they can complement each other well…hence the name.

Adjacent/Harmonizing Colors—These colors lie right next to each other on the color wheel. Even though they harmonize well together, there may appear washed out as there is not be enough contrast. 

 

 

Because of the varying shades and tints of all the colors on the wheel, you can achieve a very personal look.  Pick your colors from something you love already—a dress, photography, floral arrangement, etc.  Select three colors—light, medium and dark.  These colors could be found in anything and doesn’t necessarily be something that you introduce, but something to play off of in your design.  Just remember—light recedes, darker draws in.  Be sure to distribute the color evenly—this can be done with centerpieces, linens, lighting, present colors at your venue or in nature.  In design, using contrasting/clashing colors creates a more formal feel, while using adjacent/harmonizing colors can create a casual feel. On that same token, you are more likely to have more dimension and depth when using contrasting colors.  For easier selection, go to stores like Home Depot or Sherwin Williams for paint samples, where you can play with various colors.  To stay up with colors that are hot and in season, check out the Pantone color trends.  Be sure not to go overboard with “trendy” colors; it can cause your design to look very dated in years to come.

 

Remember that you want your color to invoke a feeling that is congruent to the event experience you want to create.  Will your vision be alluring and seductive or playful and demure?  Do you want your colors to be energizing or tranquil?

Event Vision 101: Scale Up

eventvision101

At times, it is far easier to think about your details and their place in the grand scheme of things, rather than to be overwhelmed with all of them at once.  Instead of thinking of the entire reception, think of one table.  This is the only table that needs your attention, the only table that will convey your event’s personality

 

Close your eyes. 

 

Tell me about it.

 

What colors are on the table?  Are they deep and rich?  Soft and light?  Run your hand across the table—what textures do you feel?  Soft satin?  Crinkly bichon? How does the table make you feel?  What about your place setting and glasses?  Is it modern or traditional?  Eclectic or romantic?  Do you feel an ambient glow on your face?  Is it coming from small votives?  Thick pillars, or floating candles?

 

Take a whiff.

Which fragrant aromas are present? Open your eyes—what flowers are on your table? What do their containers look like?  Glass or silver vases? Tall, square or cylinder?  Low to the table?  What shape is your table—oblong or round? What about your chairs—are they casual or elegant? Think about a quiet dinner with your  love, and holding hands across this beautifully designed table. If the table was the only thing in the room, where would you feel that you were?  The key is to create an experience at each table for all guests to enjoy, and duplicate it for the remaining tables. You could choose to create a slightly different experience, by using different linens or centerpieces. 

 

Start small, scale up. 

Event Vision 101: Personality

eventvision101

 

Finding your event’s personality is crucial.  I no longer like to say the term “theme” because it’s a bit antiquated and can be a bit stifling.  However, just like a theme, having more than one at your event can be confusing and distracting.  No good ever came out of anything with multiple personalities—this includes your wedding.  Your  event’s personality could be inspired by color, a location, a jewel, an era, or even food!  How does it make you feel when you think of it?  What does it make you want to do the second the thought of it enters your mind?  In other words, if your event were a person, who would it be?  How would it smell?  What would it look like?  How would it feel? 

Starting off with very basic questions in the beginning of your planning process can be helpful to get you to discover facets of your design that you hadn’t originally considered. Also, asking them halfway through your planning allows you to make sure you are staying on track and can steer away from an event vision exorcism. 

Ask yourself—if your long lost friend had missed your wedding, how would you describe it to them?  What would you create that would be the most memorable for you, as well as your guests?  Could you sum up your event vision in just five words?  What words or feelings would then stem from that? 

 

You will find that your event’s personality is born right before your eyes.