Category Archives: Inspiration Boards

Wedding Favors; shawls


We love these individually wrapped shawls. It’s a great way to make sure guests stay warm for those gorgeous outdoor weddings. Weather can be fickle and change on a dime, so why not be ready? Brides can mix and match to incorporate the color palette of the wedding. They can be a wonderful inexpensive way to cater to the guests and keep the color scheme flowing throughout the wedding. Plus the shawls are a cozy favor for guests to keep wearing even after the big day. It is such a cute and lasting piece of the design.

Photography: Michael & Anna Costa Photographers Ltd , Planning + Design: Joy de Vivre Wedding Coordination


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Filed under Color Palettes, Design Inspiration, Do It Yourself, Good Gifting, Inspiration Boards, Uncategorized, Wedding Fashion

Pastel Bridal Gowns; Elie Saab

elie saab pastel gowns blogWe cannot get enough of these pastel bridal gowns. They are an elegant and beautiful choice for brides looking for something a little different and unique. These spring colors are sure to make a lovely statement and add a beautiful flare to any wedding. This collection of gowns came from Elie Saab Spring 2012 Couture. There seem to be more and more pastel wedding dresses coming out each season with every collection and we are so excited to see this trend grow and take root – it’s a perfect way to introduce a little fun color for the nontraditional bride!

Image credit unknown. If anyone knows where these originated from, please let us know!

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Filed under Color Palettes, Design Inspiration, Inspiration Boards, The Style Files, Vintage Romance, wedding dress tips, Wedding Fashion

Carneros Inn; Gorgeous Venue for Napa Wedding

0715 bride groom outside0284 cake pop setup0987 carneros scenery0544 ceremony

One of our favorite venues to work at in the beautiful wine country is Carneros Inn in Napa, CA. Not only does it provide you with breathtaking views of the Napa Valley, their exquisite selection of wine and food is perfect for those “foodie” couples out there. We love this location! It is wonderful for our wine country brides as well as a great escape for a fabulous destination wedding. The above photos are from a wedding we designed & planned a few years back for Ashley & Scott – it was an intimate destination wedding for this couple, and despite the morning rain, the couple and their guests all had a fabulous time.  We are super excited about our upcoming September wedding at The Carneros Inn for local San Francisco couple Rosanna & Andrea – be sure to check back later this year for photos from their fabulous Italian inspired fete.

Check out The Carneros Inn for more venue details:

Wedding Planner & Designer: The Stylish Soiree Photography: Jenny Martell Florals: Branch Out Flowers Venue: The Carneros Inn, Napa, CA


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Filed under Color Palettes, Design Inspiration, Inspiration Boards, Uncategorized, Wedding Fashion, Wedding Venues

Green & Gold Spring Wedding Inspiration

Simple Spring Centerpiece and table arrangement

Spring Centerpiece and table Arrangement

We love nothing more than the chance to collaborate on styled wedding inspiration shoots with some of our favorite vendors. In this design, bold greenery against a white and black table setting adds a pop of color to this beautiful arrangement. Some extra little green and gold accents really bring out the fresh feelings of springtime.  Vintage touches in the glasses and candle holders give the table a little something extra. This elegant table arrangement is perfect for any outdoor or spring wedding.

Event Planner & Designer: The Stylish Soiree  Floral Designs: Soulflower Design Studio  Photography: Melanie Duerkopp  Vintage Rentals: One True Love Vintage Rentals  Venue: Private estate in Napa, CA. Contact us for more details.

A full spread can be seen in this months issue of Today’s Bride and also at

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Filed under Budget Friendly & Fabulous, Color Palettes, Design Inspiration, Do It Yourself, Inspiration Boards, Vintage Romance, Wedding Flowers, Wedding Photography

photo credit: Nancy Ray & Caroline Joy via

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February 24, 2014 · 5:42 pm

DIY Matchbooks


Matchbooks are an adorable giveaway for guests to use or to keep as a souvenir from your wedding. Style Me Pretty put up a great tutorial on how to make them and personalize them yourself!

You will need:

matchboxes (ones in the tutorial are from Ralphs), kraft paper (or any color or decorative paper you plan to use), computer/printer (if you plan to print out your design), ruler, Cutting Mat
scissors/razor blade, 
glue stick (or tacky glue)
, pencil
, bobby pins
, cardstock.

Click here to see step by step instructions, and pictures to go along with the instructions!

Original DIY by Papermade, photograph by Max Wanger

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Filed under Budget Friendly & Fabulous, Do It Yourself, Good Gifting, Inspiration Boards, Uncategorized, Wedding Favors

Chanel Inspired Wedding Featured on Style Me Pretty

I’m so excited to announce that the Chanel-inspired wedding I styled & designed with Studio 28 Photo and JL Designs has been featured on my absolute favorite wedding blog, Style Me Pretty. The shoot was inspired by the Chanel Spring 2010 RTW runway collection and was such a dream to style and design.

What I loved most about styling for this photo shoot was that we incorporated both high end and low end fashion into each look yet it all looks incredibly luxe and chic – you can’t tell which pieces are from Forever21 versus Marc Jacobs, which jewelry is real and which is costume. I wanted to pull together this wedding photo shoot to help illustrate the value of good styling and hiring a wedding planner with an eye for fashion. My ideal clients are women drawn to beauty, taste and stylish design, and I hope that that this Chanel-inspired shoot speaks to their sense of aesthetics. Enjoy!

Vendor Credits: Styling, planning & design development: Yelena Johnson, The Stylish Soiree / Photography: Allison & Kyle Richter of Studio 28 Photo / Floral Design: Carissa Jones, JL Designs & Events / Paper Goods: Calligraphy Katrina and Maison du Papier / Hair & Makeup: Dedra Whitt / Venue: Brookside Equestrian Center, Walnut, CA; Contact Lisa Walton-Cortes / Wedding Dresses: L’ezu Atelier in Beverly Hills, CA; Contact Patricia Nevil / Dresses Used in Shoot (from L’ezu): Acqua di Rosa (blush silk gown with chiffon detail at neck), Acqua di Giglio (silk with chiffon overlay, one shoulder and black pearl/floral details), Alonso (short dress) / Rentals: Party Rental King; white ladderback chairs, mirror and black French glass chargers / Linens: Wildflower Linens

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Filed under Inspiration Boards, The Style Files, Wedding Fashion

The Stylish Soiree’s Scholarship Entry – woot!

No matter how many events I plan, I’ve promised myself to never become complacent. I’m dedicated to continually learning more to improve my own skills and boost the repertoire of The Stylish Soiree, which is why Wedding360’s Academy for Designers & Planners peaked my interest so much. The seminar features some of the best and brightest in the wedding industry, both design-wise and business-wise…and it kicks off on my birthday, to boot. The chance to hear some of these amazing people speak and impart their knowledge had me SO excited, although the price tag gave me pause. I was torn between investing in my business and my other big goal, saving for a future down payment on a home.

As luck would have it, Wedding360 was generous enough to host a design concept contest for the Academy, with the winner enjoying a full ‘scholarship’ for the seminar! Venti green tea in hand, I sat down with a notepad and my laptop yesterday and hashed out ideas, searched for pictures, and (much to his dismay) bounced ideas off of Mike all day.  Finally, after nearly 10 hours of editing my ideas, pictures and design concept, I submitted the below. It was not a minute too soon, because my eyes were seriously about to go cross on me from staring at the screen all day, hehe. The description is a bit lengthy (what can I say, I’m a former writer!) but I hope you enjoy it. 🙂 Happy Friday!

Here is the gist of the application prompt, but the uber creative & talented Gloria Wong Design: “A farm-owner proposes to his glamorous socialite girlfriend. They are commplete opposites. He likes the simple rural country life. She likes the lavish uptown city life. They wish to blend their personalities and styles for their wedding. How do you meld these two lifestyles into a tasteful event?”

Written Portion of my Application:

The Concept

The design concept for this wedding is best described with the phrase “simple luxury.” Since his lifestyle is all about the simple pleasures of the country and hers is all about style, glamour and luxury, I felt that ‘simple luxury’ encompasses both of their passions while still giving me a cohesive design framework for their wedding. For the venue, I chose a spot that would appeal to both a luxury-loving socialite and a nature-loving farmer: the gorgeous Napa Valley. Since the socialite bride has undoubtedly spent years attending events in New York’s best venues, I thought that creating a luxury destination wedding in a region renowned for its farm-fresh food and world-class wines would be a unique, perfect setting for the couple to entertain guests of all backgrounds.

The Venue

The venue pictured is the romantic Beltane Ranch in Sonoma, which is an ideal canvas for the ‘simple luxury’ design concept. The Beltane Ranch was awarded the Travel & Leisure World’s Best Award for ‘Best Kept Secret’, boasting tennis courts, gardens and vineyards for the socialite set as well as a working ranch that keeps horses, cattle, dogs and hens – just the kind of setting to make a farmer feel at home. For the color palette I used granite, mocha, and cream. I picked these hues because they give the design a muted, sophisticated feel but are all earthy colors commonly found in nature as well.

The Bride & Groom’s Styling

Being a socialite, the bride naturally would want a spectacular gown that hasn’t been seen on other brides. Since The Stylish Soiree specializes in bridal styling as well, I would help the bride choose the gorgeous ivory and gray/blue J. Mendel couture gown that is pictured, crafted from airy silk tulle. Dove gray Guiseppe Zanotti peep toe pumps adorned with an architectural bow (almost inspired by the Chrysler building, a nod to the bride’s New York roots) and an ethereal silk tulle garter handcrafted by Florrie Mitton (we added a sterling silver horseshoe charm to the center as a special surprise for the horse-crazy groom). The groom is outfitted in a pinstripe gray suit (which he would feel more comfortable in than an ultra-formal tux), with a boutonnière fashioned from wild-picked thistle – much better suited to his style than a calla lily or rose.

The Design Elements

The design elements for the event include a mixture of upscale items, textures and designs with those that are more rustic and homey. I would incorporate wood, crystal, silk, metal and burlap elements into the design to create a richly textured feel to the wedding that is as warm and inviting as it is sophisticated. In the cocktail hour and reception area, ample candlelight would bathe the entire evening in a warm happy glow.

The Ceremony

Distressed wooden pews strewn with the numbered silk pillows (shown in the design board) would be set up in rows facing a large, gnarled oak tree where the couple would exchange their vows. Hanging from the tree’s branches behind the couple and officiant would be a row of three antique window panes with select words from their vows calligraphied onto the glass panes as a backdrop, with views of the rolling vineyards and hills behind the window panes. Large cream dinner plate dahlias are attached to the tree’s branches so it looks as if it is flowering the dahlias, creating a soft, romantic feel for the ceremony.

The Cocktail Hour

A specialty cocktail catering staff would be hired (like Cuff & Buttons), who will mix up all-organic, natural cocktails from scratch for guests and garnish them with fresh fruit from Beltane Ranch. The food catering is by none other than Thomas Keller’s Bouchon restaurant, which focuses on the gourmet simplicity of French bistro style food. For cocktail hour the waiters tray pass mini truffled croque monsieur sandwiches and farm fresh vegetable soup (two of the groom‘s favorites), alongside oysters on the half shell with mignonette and caviar with crème fraiche on mini toasted brioche (two of the bride‘s favorites).

While sipping organic, freshly made cocktails and nibbling on appetizers next to the paddocks, guests lounge on country French style loveseats and chairs strewn with burlap pillows that have farm product names stamped across them (as in the design board). Deep gray cashmere throws are draped over the arms of the furniture so guests can cozy up if they begin to get chilly. Each cocktail table contains a rustic basket filled with Beltane Ranch carrots, each tied with a hand-dyed silk bow and a calligraphied card inviting guests to give the horses a little treat – integrating the farm life into the guest’s experience of the event.

The Reception

While moving from the cocktail hour to the reception area, guests come across a low-hanging, massive branch of an oak tree. From the branch hangs over a hundred mini crystal bottles filled with olive oil from Beltane Ranch that serve both as place cards for dinner as well as a unique favor specific to the venue. Each olive oil bottle has an antique looking label calligraphied with the guest’s name, table number and a thank you message from the bride and groom.

Guests would be seated at three long rows of gray linen-covered long tables to enjoy a menu of white wine and Dijon mussels followed by a succulent roast chicken paired with green beans and crispy French fries perfect for mopping up the juices. The long tables are decorated with a wide, distressed wooden plank that runs down the middle to bring a rustic, natural element to the décor and to serve as a unique table runner. On top of the distressed wood are beautiful mix and match sizes of clear crystal antique perfume bottles filled with a few anemone blooms, gray berries, thistle and dusty miller. Larger arrangements in organic silhouettes are interspersed down the tables as well (in the style of the one in the design board) for bigger visual impact.

To light the evening, tall, ornate candelabras cast a warm glow on the guests as they enjoy their meal and catch up with friends old and new. The final element of design that makes the dinner table décor unique is a collection of mismatched French country style chairs all painted an antiqued mocha to add visual interest to the table while still keeping the look cohesive.

After dinner, the couple invites all the guests back to the cocktail area where a dance floor has been set up, along with a gourmet s’mores bar. Guests can choose from tiered, elegantly patterned dessert plates stacked high and labeled with the bride’s favorite chocolates from around the world, and melt them over open fire spits that have been brought in, along with custom cut-out marshmallows in the shape of lucky horseshoes. The guests then mingle and dance the night away to a mix of music (everything from classic standards to rousing country) played by a live band.

The Photo Credits:

Top row: Wedding cake and windows, Jason McGrew; Numbered Silk
Pillows, The Beautiful Life, Champagne and fruit-topped cocktails,
dolcissima events
Second row: Mocha and gray invitation suite, Hammersmith Press; The
Beltane Ranch
via their website
Third row: Vintage perfume bottles, Fine Art America; silk tulle
garter, Florrie Mitton; floral arrangement, Dandelion Ranch; Dress &
model from J. Mendel Spring 2010 show
Fourth row: Groom’s gray suit and thistle boutonniere, Adrienne Page;
French country style sofa and burlap pillows, unknown; shoes, Guiseppe
(not sure of photographer, I’ve had this one in my files for a
loooong time!)
Fifth row: Candlelit outdoor area, Josh McMurtrie; S’more, Anna
; Stable wall, country living; Candlelit long tables, Fete NY Posted by Wedding 360 at 10:18 PM 8 comments


Filed under Inspiration Boards, The Style Files, Theme Party, Vintage Romance

Vintage Courthouse Wedding

At long last, here is the lovely vintage courthouse wedding I’ve been promising, photography courtesy of the talented San Diego-based Aaron Willcox Photography. What I love so much about this wedding is the simplicity that doesn’t sacrifice style.  Her meticulously planned vintage gray suit, the delicate hat with netting and her stunning purple calla bouquet. The groom is quite dapper as well!

The other thing I love about this wedding is the intimate size and courthouse setting. A courthouse wedding is no less a wedding than a full-blown elaborate affair at a country club, and what shines through these photos the most is the couple’s raw emotions. Her anticipation while getting ready, his adoring gaze, and their sheer happiness in the courtroom.  I think every bride and groom should be lucky to feel the same on their wedding day.   So without further ado….

Vintage Courthouse Wedding 1

Vintage Courthouse wedding 2

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Filed under Inspiration Boards, Vintage Romance, Wedding Fashion, Wedding Photography

Elegant New York Wedding Inspiration Board

Audrey Hepburn has always been one of my favorite fashion icons. To me, she embodies effortless style, grace and elegance – everything I hope to help brides weave into their weddings with The Stylish Soiree’s services!  I came across a picture of her in the stunning Givenchy dress from the movie Sabrina, and decided to craft a “Sophisticated New York Wedding” inspiration board around the picture.

Ceremony: Dramatic rooftop setting with sweeping New York views.

Reception: Swanky ballroom dripping in crystal chandeliers, white flowers and an Old World elegance.

Details: Seafood raw bar & martini bar, anenome bridal bouquet and matching cake, letterpress invitation suite that exudes sophistication.

NY Elegant Wedding Inspiration Board 2

photo credits (l to r): Shoot for Sabrina promo, Martini & Seafood Bar – Wedding Style Guide, Venue – 620 Fifth Avenue, Bridal Shoes & Perfume – Sharon Pappas, Couple in Car – Punam Bean, NY Invites – Minna Designs, Anenome Cake – Cake Girls.

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Filed under Inspiration Boards, The Style Files, Vintage Romance