Laura Olsen Events Shares the process Behind A remarkable New Years Eve Wedding at Airship37 Part 1 : The lead up to the Ceremony
What themes were you working with in the design of this wedding?
This wedding was a true combination of personalities and design tastes. My clients are so outgoing and fun and they wanted something different, not Christmas focused, or too New Years-ish. It had to be intimate but it still had to be a party since it was NYE. With the winter holidays comes cold temperatures so we decided to balance that brisk weather with warm colours, fabrics, textures, loads of candle light and other natural elements that help to create coziness. I absolutely love mixing patterns and textures to create some subtle visual interest, so looking for ways to incorporate this across the design was important. Bringing the outdoors in became a natural theme for us as we made each design decision.
The florals worked with a variety of greens and the “flowers” themselves had an ethereal “light” quality to them. How did you and Blush and Bloom arrive at these choices?
When it came to florals, my bride, gave us direction that she wanted something rustic and winter inspired. I wanted to make sure we included florals that were a bit unusual from the typical rustic arrangements that you see and that they didn’t feel too heavy. To me, having breathing room for each stem is important, which I think in itself immediately makes an arrangement feel lighter and have more movement. Becky’s (Blush and Bloom) idea to include cotton balls was absolutely the perfect solution as they instantly gave the arrangement an airy, but warm, cozy feeling that tied perfectly into the rest of the design. I love Becky because she’s just so brilliant and creative. She takes your ideas to another level, while maintaining your personality and the style you’re looking for.
The choice to highlight the fan in the Hanger had a great ambient quality. What was the thinking behind this?
Well, we knew the ceremony backdrop was going to be repurposed for the backdrop behind the bar at the reception which forced me to think creatively about how to set up the room – mainly, where to place the head table. Neither my clients or I loved the idea of doing the traditional head table so we decided to do a King’s Table in the centre of the room, which felt far more intimate! Since we chose to do the head table in the centre of the room, we had to ensure it didn’t get lost in the big picture and that it would still be easily identifiable. So, we decided to create a garland chandelier above the table, dressing the table itself with a different linen that complimented those of the guest tables. We were all thrilled with how it effortlessly included the fan into the design and made the entire evening feel more cozy.
The chairs had such unique personality. They seemed to create a feeling as though they grew from the ground. Such a natural sense. What period would you say they were from and what informed this choice?
It’s funny you mention that they felt as though they had grown right out of the ground. We all felt that same thing when we saw it all coming together. I always think there has to be one major design element that starts the ball rolling and for me, when you’re working with a blank canvas that major piece is the chair as it’s used absolutely everywhere in the room. A chair can make or break the look of the wedding. If you get it wrong, or try to make something fit where it shouldn’t, it just looks out of place. We went through a couple rounds of design for this wedding, and each round was based on a different choice of chair. To me, the cross-back were a natural choice given the other elements with which we were working and they were definitely my client’s favourite! They’re rustic, but refined, and have a French Provincial feel about them. As a bonus, they’re extremely comfortable!
Walking into the Hangar for the ceremony must have given the guests a feeling of calm and serenity with the perfectly balanced decor and minimalist yet lush choices. What was the planning behind this?
I’m so glad you think so! My biggest rule for design is to keep things simple and timeless. In any wedding that I do, making smart choices to include major design elements that serve double purpose is incredibly important to me. This saves my clients money, of course, but it also makes the design feel less pretentious, more relaxed, and achievable. Including too much ‘stuff’ complicates the set up, confuses the eye, and clutters the entire vision.
The Gooderham Lounge had such a fun relaxing almost “night-club: feel to it. What was your thinking behind this design?
I absolutely LOVE the Gooderham Lounge. The huge chandelier over the bar is an amazing focal point, and I didn’t want to take away from that. Going back to one of my strengths of mixing textures I decided to use matte white linens to balance the metallic and glossy cruiser and coffee tables. The leather of the complimentary white Barcelona lounge furniture was made even more luxurious with the faux fur blankets. Lots of gold mercury glass votives and soft grey concrete inspired vessels for the floral arrangements were so, so perfect to play off the vibe of the space.
What would be three words that come to mind that describe the feeling of the ceremony at Airship37?
Intimate, lush, organic.
If you were to think ahead to 2015 New Year’s Eve what would the Hangar look like next year for a wedding ceremony?
I would absolutely love to see some bright, colourful, loose florals complimented with some winter greenery. Lots of vases strewn about the ceremony ‘altar’ mixed with votives, perhaps raised on risers of varying heights, some on the floor. Perhaps an oversized background with some beautiful handprinted art. Clear, acrylic chairs. Deep coloured sequinned linens for the head table, with votives hanging from the ceiling. Brass pots for floral vessels. Oh gosh, I’m way too excited just thinking about it.
Stay tuned for part two of this wedding interview with Laura Olsen Events and Blush and Bloom Flower studio with featured pictures by photographer Carmin Davidson Photography
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