Recently I showed the wedding for Allison and Neil who chose Gaynes Park for their intimate ceremony. A few weeks later everyone celebrated again, this time with a contemporary marquee party at their Essex home. When I first met Allison and Neil they expressed their wish to have a big party with a lot of entertainment for the guests. It was vital the party felt like a big celebration – not a wedding evening reception.
As always I hired American Marquees for the basic marquee structure, when Mark arrived for a site visit he looked confused then said “I’ve been here before”, turned out he had done a marquee for the previous owners. Small world of marquees! The site was a little difficult to use as access was round the back via a farmers field + my clients had permanent fencing round the perimeter of their garden. Therefore together Mark and I ensured the logistics of all deliveries were doable, could trailers fit inside the gate and more importantly could they get out again? In fact it was for this reason we were unable to have a taxi booth, we physically couldn’t get him in the garden unless he arrived pre marquee going up! This is yet another reason why it’s important to hire a planner who is well versed in the logistics of a marquee event, recognising difficulties and solving them in advance.
Once Mark was on board I hired James from Wedding Creative to take on the lighting and bespoke styling. The three of us frequently work together and make a good team, well I think so anyway! As well as the interior lighting I asked James to project a monogram onto the clients home, seeing their initials lit up at night looks fabulous. Allison and Neil wanted to have a Casino and although I thought it was a great idea, I did wonder how it would fit with the contemporary and modern design. The solution was to create an annex with a total different feel. My brief to James was I wanted it to be glamorous but dark. The solution was gold coloured organza drapes on the black walls, lit poseur tables and a string voile central chandelier. We also used the voile strings to separate the casino from the main marquee so it felt more decadent parting the strings to enter the casino.
The main marquee was lit by James and we used mini voile strings over lit cube poufs and a big central chandelier over the oval bar. Modern furniture was hired in from London to complete the look.
I had the delight of working with Justin from Limeberry Catering who produced delicious canapés, bowl food, dessert station AND hog rolls late at night! And with iBarco running the bar guests were certainly never hungry or thirsty.
To complete the party we had a saxophonist , vodka luge, magician (amazing), casino and superb band. The dance floor was packed most of the night. Lisa and I had a lot of fun organising this party and returning home at 3am was no chore as the party was a huge success.
We had the most amazing night and loved every minute of it. Our friends can’t stop talking about how it was the best party they ever been to. A big thank you to you as it was everything we had hoped for and more! Allison and Neil, May 2013
My thanks to the wonderful Kerry Morgan for her images