How to Make Your Head Table A Design Focal Point

Whatever your flower and decor budget is, I think one of the best uses of that money is through incorporating major focal points throughout your event design - and an easy one is your head table! Since everyone’s eyes will naturally flick to your head table or sweetheart table throughout the evening anyways, you might as well make it the centrepiece of the entire reception.

An added benefit of creating a design focal point is that when one area stands out, you can scale back in other areas. So, if you’re working with a limited budget, adding more drama to your head table may allow you to cut back on the centrepieces.

I’ve got some real cool head table designs in the works for 2019 weddings - can’t wait to show them off! Dream catchers, neon flowers, greenery accents…all sorts of great stuff.

Here are a few ideas!

Hanging Floral Installations

You know I love a hanging floral installation, though of course whether or not you can incorporate this design style depends completely on your venue. Most venues in Winnipeg don’t actually have a way for us to hang anything behind the head table BUT there are a few that do have this capacity, and I love to do it up! I particularly love this style because I think it looks amazing in photos - I love seeing those shots of the couples kissing underneath it :)

Low Floral Arrangements

It’s never a bad idea to keep the design low to the table, as long as there is enough texture and movement throughout the entire piece. Whether it’s one centralized arrangement or several low but full floral arrangements spaced along the table, you make a major statement. I personally prefer more floral-heavy designs (obviously) but a greenery garland is a great way to go, too!

Floral Backdrop

There are multiple ways you could go about a floral backdrop - tall pieces behind you, individual hanging pieces or strands of flowers, or a full-on floral wall.

Hanging Flower Strands - Winnipeg Wedding Florists

Looking for a Wedding Floral and Event Designer in Winnipeg?

My 2020 waitlist has already been started, and couples interested in full event and floral design will be contacted first about their dates. I offer a limited number of dates for event design each year, in order to allow me to work closely with each couple. Combining event and floral design is the perfect option for couples who live out of town, or couples who feel they need a little extra help in creating the visual plan for their wedding day. Click this link to learn more!

From Sketches to Reality - How Wedding Design Comes Together

Sketching isn’t something that I do for every client, but it serves many purposes in my job. I love being able to provide my clients with superior customer service, and sometimes, sketches are needed to do just that. So, I wanted to show you all a little behind the scenes - from sketches to reality, how a wedding design comes together!

Most of the time when I sketch, it’s either to communicate a vision that isn’t clearly understood or shared, or it’s for an event design client who receives more detailed design plans as a part of working with me. I love being able to sketch out different elements for my event design clients, especially when they happen to live out of town. It helps them to make sure that I understand the features and limitations of the venues they’ve chosen, and above all, shows them that I have great ideas for how we can personalize their wedding and make sure that theirs will be a celebration that is really and truly custom to them.

This combination was one of my most popular posts on Instagram this year - and it’s what made me realize that you all like to see the behind the scenes a little more! Lise came to me inspired by maypoles and dreaming of a whimsical garden party. For her head table at Cielo’s Garden, I came up with the idea of a maypole-inspired floral chandelier but felt like my words were doing a poor job of describing what I was picturing - enter the sketch!
Photo by Ariana Tennyson

For Jessica and Liam’s wedding at the Rustic Wedding Barn, we wanted to do something a little fuller and more special for their head table and I wanted to give her and her wedding planner a visual to make sure we were on the same page. Sometimes when there are multiple heads involved in the design process, things can get a little muddy so it’s best to be as clear as possible!
Photo by Sugar & Soul Photography

Celia and Cam’s fall wedding at The Kitchen Sync was so lovely and intimate! They were planning from long distance, which can make it extra tricky to communicate a vision well. In this case, I did up two side-by-side sketches of a table garland option to communicate two budget options, showing differing amounts of greenery, floral spotlights, and candles. While this doesn’t always show the exact scale, I tried really hard to make this as close to accurate as possible and then allowed them to choose what budget point they were most comfortable with!
Photo by Sugar & Soul Photography

Heather (and her mom, who was very involved in the planning) wanted a feminine, garden-inspired wedding with lots of florals. The ballroom at St Charles Country Club is somewhat strangely U shaped, with low ceilings, so we felt that it would be really important to create a major focal point for the head table and I wanted to use these gold stands that were a new rental item for me. Mid-way through the planning, Heather’s mom was unsure if she liked the idea of a differently shaped head table, if it should have floral on it, etc. Sketching it out helped her to visualize the overall design, and also helped to calm her nerves about how it would look.
Photo by Joel Ross

I love being able to create a new vision for a space that’s been used a lot before. The loft space at Fort Gibraltar is used for a lot of wedding ceremonies (especially winter ones!) and I knew I wanted to do something different, that hadn’t been done there before. Rachel and Matt loved the idea of a hanging installation, and given that they were having a December wedding, I wanted it to be fragrant and seasonal. We wanted to incorporate lights (originally, we were planning on using cafe lights but on the day of, the venue told us we had to use the little Christmas lights to avoid the bulbs getting too hot, which was a bummer but it still worked out!).
Photo by Sugar & Soul Photography


And of course, sometimes sketching things out makes it obvious that it’s not the right design for a particular wedding. Here are a few of my favourite sketches that didn’t come to fruition, but would still be gorgeous options for a wedding!

Eclectic Wedding Flower Ideas - Sketches of Wedding Flowers

Above and below were original design plans for Stephanie and Andrew, for whom I provided event design as well as floral design. While the overall plan stayed relatively the same, some things were edited or eliminated - like the potted fern table numbers.
Photo at bottom right by Ariana Tennyson

Fireplace Mantle Wedding Flower Ideas - Winnipeg's Top Wedding Florist

The sketches above and below are based on a wedding that I dreamed up at Whitetail Meadow for a competition I was a part of at the Team Flower Conference in 2018 (I ended up receiving the top award for this portion, “Mastery in Communication”). If you want me to make this a reality for you, I will do so VERY gladly!

Fall Wedding Ceremony Flower Ideas - Outdoor Weddings in Winnipeg
Wedding Ceremony Arch Flowers - Wedding Flowers Winnipeg

This arch and head table sketch served very useful for my communication for a bride who spoke English, but not comfortably, and who also did most of her planning from China. I could tell she was worried that I wouldn’t understand her because of the language barrier, so putting these sketches together helped her to feel more comfortable and know that I shared her vision and understood what she was looking for!

From Sketch to Reality - Hanging Greenery Garland over Head Table

The sketches below actually did come mostly to life for another event design client in 2017 (we ended up changing the ceremony design), but I never received the professional photos to share with you. I was so pleased on the day of the wedding - these sketches truly became reality and were just what I had promised to the clients. This was another case of a couple who lived out of town and were planning from another province, and I wanted to make the entire event and floral design process as simple as possible for them. Providing them with detailed ideas and sketches made them feel extra comfortable, despite the long distance.


Looking for a Wedding Floral and Event Designer in Winnipeg?

My 2020 waitlist has already been started, and couples interested in full event and floral design will be contacted first about their dates. I offer a limited number of dates for event design each year, in order to allow me to work closely with each couple. Combining event and floral design is the perfect option for couples who live out of town, or couples who feel they need a little extra help in creating the visual plan for their wedding day. Click this link to learn more!

What Is Event Design?

I've been working in weddings for just about 9 years now, and trends and styles have come and gone. What hasn't is the way that I feel about weddings: "the best" weddings that I've seen or been a part of (aka my favourites) have been the best because of the ways that the wedding makes you feel. They're the best because of how I've been able to see how the couple comes out in the details. As a guest, you walk into the wedding and feel a sense of recognition - you're definitely at the right wedding.

That's why I love being a part of full event design so much. It's about so much more than just the details - yes, we start there, and they play a major role in communicating your style and vision to the guests - but it's more about the way that you want your wedding to feel.

Event design is about designing beyond the flowers. Developing your style, figuring out what it is that will make your wedding special, unique and personal, and then pulling together all of the vendors who will be a part of that - linens and decor rentals, lighting, stationery, cake design - is all part of the process.

To me, a beautiful event isn’t one that has every single little detail that Pinterest shows you, but rather a wedding where the design components are considerately planned, and thoughtfully styled and executed in a personal way. I love taking all of the bits and pieces that you’ve imagined and lend an experienced eye to bring it together into a cohesive, well-designed event...not a wedding that you've already seen on Pinterest, but a wedding that honestly reflects the two of you.

Looking for a wedding event designer in Winnipeg?

Getting married in Manitoba? I have the availability to accept 2-3 full event design commissions for 2019. This service is booked in tandem with wedding flowers, and really allows me to help you create a wedding experience that really and truly reflects you and will put your guests at ease.

(Popular 2019 wedding dates are already booking up!)

Wedding Event Design 3.0 - Designing a Beautiful Ceremony Space

Over this last year, my favourite thing to design has definitely become a gorgeous ceremony space, and I've found this to be a really major part of the event design process. 

Sometimes, despite the intimate words that are spoken during the ceremony, I find that the setting still feels impersonal. Chances are pretty good that the place where you're saying your vows wasn't built just for the two of you -- most likely, countless other couples have gotten married there, too. There's no problem with that at all, but it does mean that we have to work a little harder to make the space feel personalized to the two of you.

So, I aim to design a space for the two of you - maybe it's defined by an installation hanging above the two of you, or I create something to mark around the space where you'll say your vows. Maybe I can incorporate plenty of foliage and flowers to create a piece that appears that it's been growing there for years, enveloping you in it's secret garden-esque feel. I love getting my hands dirty here, working with more than just flowers and foliage! I'm not afraid to get out the power tools and build something, either!

Crafting a space that allows the couple to feel grounded and connected, a place that allows them to cherish each other and remind themselves of the focus of the day, is such a special opportunity and one that I love to have.

Video made by Prairie Film Co.

Below are some examples of different ceremony spaces that I've designed, all in the beautiful chapel at Cielo's Garden, but each feels different. I want my couples to know that I'm going to get creative and inventive for them, designing something different for them than they've seen before or different from what their friends have had. I'm working on some incredible designs for the same space next year, and can't wait for them to become real!

Photo by  Pantel Photography  / Designing this piece was one of the happiest projects of my wedding season this year!

Photo by Pantel Photography / Designing this piece was one of the happiest projects of my wedding season this year!

Photo by  Simply Rosie Photography  / Loved bringing a garden feel indoors here.

Photo by Simply Rosie Photography / Loved bringing a garden feel indoors here.

Photo by  Rachwal Photography  / I was so happy when the bride told me butterflies were attracted to the flowers throughout the ceremony!

Photo by Rachwal Photography / I was so happy when the bride told me butterflies were attracted to the flowers throughout the ceremony!

Photo by  Victoria Anne Photography  / Setting designed by bride with Stone House flowers 

Photo by Victoria Anne Photography / Setting designed by bride with Stone House flowers 

Photo by  Mackenzie Jean Photography  / I collected the branches to build this piece for months! 

Photo by Mackenzie Jean Photography / I collected the branches to build this piece for months! 

If you'd like me to create a beautiful ceremony space for you, please don't hesitate to reach out. 

DESIGNING YOUR COLOUR PALETTE

One of the first questions that any bride-to-be will hear from friends is, "What are your wedding colours?' And girls, let me tell you something awesome: gone are the days of picking one (maximum two!) colour, pairing it with white, and plastering that single shade everywhere. Let me tell you why this isn't a good idea: 

1) It's totally boring.
2) There is absolutely no life to the aesthetic side of your wedding.
3) If the various shades of that pre-determined colour don't match from item to item (ie. from invitation to flowers to tablecloths), then it's going to look like barf - and some colours are harder to find than others.

So, here's what I think you should do when designing your palette:

1) Select 2-3 main shades. Yep, 3. These are the colours that you're going to be using most often - stationery, bridal party attire, flowers, tablescapes, etc. 

2) Add in 2-3 complimentary colours, which coordinate with your main palette. These will be used as accents to tie the rest of your palette together, in smaller details: ribbons, place cards, table numbers, and so on. 

3) Add in a texture or two - this is what's really going to give your palette life! Whether you lean towards a metallic or love the whimsy of watercolour, want to bring the richness of velvet or prefer the organic, raw touch of linen, this texture is going to ensure that the rest of your colour palette and overall design actually make your aesthetic choices FEEL how you want them to. The texture is what will give your guests a tactile experience.

So go for it! Try on some major colour and see how much easier it's going to be to pull everything together. Some shades I'm craving right now? Burgundies with peach and a golden caramel, complimented with deep plum foliage, the softest pink, and the ever-popular metallic gold, and of course, lots of jewel-tone greeneries!

How to Choose your Wedding Colour Palette - Stone House Creative

Need help with your palette? I also offer Event Design services for a limited number of weddings each year. I'd love to talk with you about your wedding! Shoot me an email at stonehouseweddings@gmail.com and we'll chat!