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From Mitch and Christina’s down-home Georgia wedding to Jonny and Sarah’s classic vintage affair, to Angie and Linnie’s romantic beach setting, Patrick and I have seen so many beautiful weddings this year. It’s given us a chance to do many things, but the two most important are 1) to appreciate and celebrate that love is in the center of our lives and 2) to steal ideas. Well, not really steal them. Ok, fine. Steal them.

We spent last week in New York City to celebrate the wedding of Patrick’s brother, Andrew, and the love of his life, Cherie. It was a great weekend of celebrating, and I was able to meet Patrick’s extended family.

The ceremony was a traditional Persian ceremony, which meant incorporating a number of symbolic gestures into the ceremony. It was peaceful and beautiful, and it was so happy. The beginning of the processional really set a tone for the rest of the evening, and people cheered loudly as the bridal party walked down the aisle. I LOVE THIS. So, if you’re a guest and you’re reading this – CHEER AT MY WEDDING! And also, throw money.

The New York chic style paired with the night club setting created a fun, happening atmosphere. As owners of the night club, Andrew and Cherie were able to have a private party, revamp the decor and create a wedding that was as beautiful as it was fun. The food was a buffet-style, which was available on both levels of the club. Meanwhile, I conducted interviews about whether guests preferred a sit-down meal or a buffet, and guess what? Buffet wins!

Andrew and Cherie’s reception had few tables, no assigned seating and had designated lounge areas. The lack of assigned seating created an atmosphere where guests could move about freely rather than being confined to a specific table. They mingled more and danced more than guests I’ve seen at any other wedding I’ve been to. I loved the environment, the only down side to not having the traditional table settings is that it creates a slight inconvenience when it comes time to eat.

We enjoyed the atmosphere of Andrew and Cherie’s wedding so much, that we’re leaning toward eliminating the assigned seating, which would unfortunately mean my having to say goodbye to some of my brilliant ideas for place card displays. We’re faced with this challenge: to assign or not to assign?

I think my sister’s wedding was a bit indicative as to which of my relatives would be dancing. And aside from the occasional drunk or two, there were very few people on the dance floor aside from a small group that danced the whole time (Kelsey, my mom, Patrick, me, and a few others). Most of my relatives seemed to gather at the bar or stick to their seats. Ashley and Sam seemed to make their way around to each table to visit with all of their guests, but unfortunately the guests didn’t do too much dancing or moving around. While the two settings of the weddings (Andrew and Cherie’s vs. Ashley and Sam’s) were vastly different, there are a few things to consider. I’d say that overall, the crowd at the NYC wedding was younger, there were more of them, and I think that the actual night club setting made it hard to do anything but dance. Also Ashley and Sam set the tone of their wedding to be less about dancing and more about spending time with family and friends, which I think was executed well.

Enough blabbering about that for now, but the point is, guests, DANCE AT MY WEDDING! Patrick and I danced nonstop the whole night, we had a great time, we smiled a ton and that’s how we want it to be at our wedding.

Cherie and Andrew’s wedding also made us second-guess our choice to hire a band. They had a DJ, and the music selections were awesome! Granted, he was a professional DJ working at a night club in New York, but it was a nice change from the usual Hokey- Pokey- steal- the- show- and -make- things- awkward- during- every-part- of- your- reception DJ.

And, of course we’re going to steal the idea of ordering pizza around midnight or so. As soon as we saw the pizzas on the table, Patrick’s eyes lit up like Christmas morning. This is the kind of joy only brothers understand.

Whitney

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