Vendor Spotlight: Floral Art

We were recently introduced to Floral Art, a fantastic floral design studio, boutique and event d├ęcor business located in Venice, CA (Los Angeles) and wanted to share the find with our readers!

The founder, Jennifer McGarigle, has been in the business for seventeen years and has gained notable recognition through her loyal celebrity clientele and is well regarded for her distinctive style - fashion forward and immediately recognizable. In addition to couture floral design and events, she also recently launched a line of floral inspired home furnishings and accessories that are sold through the flagship store and online.

The above wedding took place at the Skirball Center in Los Angeles. Photography by Starla Fortunato. This next wedding was held at The Jonathan Club, also in Los Angeles.

Most recently, Floral Art created the floral design for Milla Jovovich’s wedding as well as Jamie Pressley’s. For more information, visit the Floral Art website today!


Groom's Monogram

This special monogram was created especially for the groom and used throughout the bachelor party. It tied in with the couple's monogram and wedding pieces.

It was an all black and white NYE wedding!


Bi-fold Map Invitation Set

The key lime motif for this Key West, Florida wedding invitation suite is simply charming! The couple opted for our bi-fold invitation that laid out all of their pertinent information nicely. The cards were 5"x7" with a 3"x5" RSVP card, all featuring our Cezanne script.




The entire set was tied together with this adorable lime wedge envelope liner!

This simple, clean look works perfectly and truly set the first impression to the wedding guests that this couple was looking for!


Tote Bags

Tote bags have become an increasingly popular item for couples to use at their weddings. They are great for destination weddings, out-of-town guests, rehearsal dinner guests, the wedding party...anyone!

The best part is that you can customize your tote not only with the design, but also with with fun snacks and mementos that you include inside.

People often fill their bags with bottles of water, snacks and guides for the area with lists of things to do. It is also nice to include things are exclusive or meaningful to the wedding region or area.

We of course recommend imprinting your custom Laura Hooper Calligraphy map on your tote, but you can find many totes to suit your personal style and wedding theme.

Tell us where you are getting/got married and what items you've included in your welcome tote bags!


In the Press: INSIDE Weddings Spring 2010

Last July we showed you a gorgeous wedding at the Ritz Carlton Laguna Niguel, and now we are happy to report that their beautiful "Summer Garden" invitations were featured in the Spring 2010 issue of INSIDE Weddings magazine!

The spread featured many drool worthy, spring-themed invitations, including ours! This pale yellow and navy blue design is one of our personal favorites, so we love sharing it with INSIDE Weddings readers.

The featured also included a page of "Expert Advice" on invitation components, and the expert was...yours truly (Laura Hooper)!

This portion of the story also included an invitation from a recent Vermont wedding that was shown on Martha Stewart online earlier this month. Being able to share knowledge regarding standard invitation pieces as well as fun add-ons is such an honor and we were pleased to be included.

Check out our Fall 2009 features in INSIDE Weddings here and here and be sure to visit INSIDE Weddings online for more wedding inspiration!


Guana Cay Map

This couple wanted to show their Florida guests the way to Guana Cay while also showing off the specifics of the island, so they commissioned us to create two maps!

The first map showcases the trip over the Grand Bahama Island to the Great Abaco Island and boat ride to the smaller Great Guana Cay!

This second map features all the hotspots of the nine mile long island of Guana Cay. Activities abound with golf, sailing, snorkeling, tennis and of course eating!


Spread in Australia's Sunday Magazine

We were honored to be the illustrator for a recent spread on independent beauty care company, L'OCCITANE. The story was included in yesterday's new issue of Australian magazine Sunday.

The article includes the business story of Frenchman Olivier Baussan who decided to use ingredients natural to Provence for his own product line. We were so pleased to provide this map featuring all the natural products! The second page included each icon on its own with background on the product.

Such a lovely story, and we were happy to be a part of it!


Italy Map

We are so happy to share our clients' maps with our readers every week, and it's great to know that our brides like seeing their maps too...here is a map from a 2008 wedding in Italy whose bride couldn't wait to see her map on A Lucky Orchid Wedding!

We used similar coloring on a New York map recently, but it's not a new effect as you can see from this older map. We love the cool, calm look that it gives, especially the shading into the sea.

This wedding took place at the gorgeous Castello di Montegridolfo, an ancient castle with a history that dates back to medieval times and a struggle between two families to maintain its ownership. Today the hotel makes for a beautiful wedding location with the Adriatric Sea just a short distance away!

Calligraphy style is Francine.


Printed Material Timeline

Invitation & Wedding Stationery Timeline -- for your convenience!

6-8 Months Prior to the Wedding:
If many of your guests will be traveling for your wedding, you should send out save the dates by about six months out. Some people choose to send save the dates whether guests are traveling or not – it’s up to you!  Now’s a good time to contact your calligrapher to get on his/her schedule in advance. (Keep in mind, many of the best calligraphers do book in advance, so it's good to plan ahead.)

6 Months:
Start looking for your invitations and work on the wording. Be sure to include accommodations information for out of town guests and reception information, preferably on a separate card. Your preferred stationer can probably help with things like this, or check out sites like the knot.com that have suggestions for wording your invites.

3-6 Months:
Finalize your invitations and place the order if you haven't done so already. If you are having custom invitations designed, it can take several weeks for proofing, printing, and delivery, depending on the company you go with. (This is true even if you aren't having custom invitations designed...plan ahead, so you don't have to rush!)
Give your envelopes and address list to your calligrapher. During busy wedding season, it can take 2-4 weeks for addressing. Make sure you thoroughly read their guidelines and policies to avoid any miscommunications (and avoid having to redo your list!).

2-3 Months:
Send out your invitations. Eight weeks in advance is the standard; or even more if you didn’t send out save the dates, but your invites should definitely be dropped in the mail by six weeks out. Be sure you weigh a fully assembled invitation at the post office to get accurate postage. As we mentioned a couple weeks ago, don’t forget to stamp your reply envelopes!

2 Months:
Finalize all other printed materials such as programs, menus, escort and/or place cards and signage (cake displays, drinks at the bar, bride and groom signs).  Often, I recommend to my clients to start on this as soon as the invites get dropped in the mail. Even if you don't have all the details nailed down, it's a good idea to place the order in advance.

4-5 Weeks Ahead:
Send out your rehearsal dinner and brunch invitations if you are having a brunch the day after the wedding. Many times we'll have requests from the mother-in-law to be to design a card to match the invitations and be included in the invitation set.

2-4 Weeks Ahead:
You should set your RSVP date for approximately four weeks prior to the wedding date and call guests who have not replied once that date comes and goes. (You'll be surprised how many people will forget to send in their cards, no matter how early you send out the invites).
Give your calligrapher a finalized set of guests/table numbers for your escort cards, menus, etc. A complete list helps prevent any confusion, but additions are common and should be sent all at once if possible.

After the Wedding:
Send out thank you notes (these should be ordered prior to the wedding; you can send a thank you as soon as you receive a gift, even if it’s before the wedding).


Same City, Different Maps: Santa Barbara

Santa Barbara, CA is a very popular place to get married with it's gorgeous scenery, wonderful climate and nearby wineries and vineyards.

Here are three maps all created for Santa Barbara weddings ~ two of them at the Biltmore Four Seasons (the third is at the equally fabulous Bacara Resort & Spa)!

{Calligraphy style is Ella}

{Calligraphy style is Bickham}

{Calligraphy style is Upright}

As you can see, the maps have very similar looks but each has its own charm! All three maps have representations of Stearns Wharf, Montecito, State Street, Highway 101, wine country and the Mission, but they are each unique. One includes horses at Hope Ranch, one has a large sailboat, two have hot air balloons, one shows the high rises of Los Angeles and various restaurants are represented.

It's so fun to see how maps of the same area are custom fitted to each couple's style and important hotspots.


Venice Invitation Suite on MarthaStewartWeddings.com

This couple's wedding was recently featured in Vermont Vows Magazine and we are so honored to have been included in their newest feature on MarthaStewartWeddings.com!

As you might have guessed, the wedding took place in Vermont. They were married in the historic town of Manchester, where the groom's mother lives. Such a gorgeous backdrop for a wedding.

{photo by Corbin Gurkin}

The couple chose to use our Venice invitation suite and ordered a complete set including invitations, rsvp card sets, full color maps with directions, and reception cards.

A custom belly band with their monogram held the entire set together.

The innner envelopes had a matching pink envelope liner, and we used two ply pearl white letterpress paper to get an extra deep imprint.

Matching menus, placecards and programs were ordered later for the ceremony and reception.

Each menu was personalized with the guest’s name in hand-lettered calligraphy.

{photo by Corbin Gurkin}

The whole set came together beautifully and tied in well with the intimate reception decor. The couple even used our custom Zazzle stamps to complete the look!

{photo by Corbin Gurkin}
{photo by Corbin Gurkin}

You can view the full Martha Stewart Weddings online feature by clicking here. Photos by Steve Steinhardt except as noted by Corbin Gurkin.


Porto Heli, Greece

Greece is one of my favorite vacation destinations, so I was more than happy to create this adorable map for a September 2010 wedding. I just love the simplicity of this map and that the couple wanted the central focus to be the water of the island nation. All the boats lined up are just perfect, and I especially enjoyed creating the "realistic" coastline with the representation of the sand. It truly gives it a beachy feel.

You can't miss the signature blue and white coloring, but perhaps the sweetest feature is the "Just Married" couple jetting off on their red moped!

Calligraphy style is Upright.


Emotional Map

This travel-themed emotional map was used for a 3.5" x 5" save the date postcard - check out all the places this couple has been to!

The couple met in Seoul, South Korea in 2000 and have a decade of travel ending up at the New York City wedding. Barcelona, Paris, Waikiki, Lisbon, Granada, Buenos Aires (honestly our jealousy is brimming!!) ~ there are tons of vacation hotspots featured in this map.

But one of our favorite touches? The reverse side features the groom with his electric guitar! So sweet.


Midnight Snacks

Midnight snacks have become increasingly popular at weddings and other special events. Last week we attended an event by The Broke-Ass Bride, and guess who was there catering - Pinkberry Frozen Yogurt!

That's right - Pinkberry now offers catering. The staff was so friendly, and the yogurt is obviously a delicious addition, so we had to share this exciting news. It's a perfect end of the night snack for your wedding, or would be a great addition to any bridal or baby shower.

Pinkberry is known to introduce new flavors and often rotates in seasonal flavors, so be sure to check out their website for updates!

Other fun catering ideas from you favorite food shops? Krispy Kreme Doughnuts, In N Out Burger, and Sprinkles all cater too!


Invitation Assembly

Now that we've given you tips on formatting your invitations, we will tell you how to assemble the various pieces in your invitation suite!

  • Your invitation lays face up as the bottom piece.
  • Slip your reply card under it's envelope flap (be sure to affix first class postage to the front of your reply envelope). It will be placed address side down so the reply card text faces up.
  • Layer the other inserts (reception card, map or directions, and reply set) on top of the invitation with the largest item at the bottom and smallest item on top.
  • Insert all pieces into inner envelope with the top of the invitation to the left side.
  • Turn the inner envelope over to expose your guests' names and insert into outer envelope.  
Voila! You are ready to stamp, seal and send because you're now "officially" getting married!


Adventures of a Maid of Honor

(Photo by Steve Steinhardt)

A funny thing happened last week. My sister gave me a call on Thursday evening.  Typically if I am working, I will let it go to voicemail, but this time I answered. We spoke briefly and when I asked why she was calling she said, "I realized I haven't called to talk to you about you in a really long time!" Well, I'm not sure what was going on with her, because she never calls just to chat, but she said, "We're sisters! We should chat!" (which is very true)

Anyway, the point of this is that even though we did end up discussing her wedding in the end, it was really sweet that she realized she has only been talking about her wedding for weeks. In doing what I do, I'm used to pretty much focusing all my attention on the biggest day of someone else's life, so it's not a big deal at all. It was just nice to talk about me, and my life, for a few minutes!


New York City Map

This adorable map just makes me want to take a vacation to New York! The cool colors look so lovely and I adore the city skyline icon at the bottom of the map!

No matter how many maps we do of New York City, each one is special and unique. How great is it that the couple is getting married right in Bryant Park?


Vendor Spotlight: Bottle Your Brand

Last April we featured a post on Bottle Your Brand, a custom product label company.

Earlier this month they launched a new website with upgraded features that include:
  • Lower costs on custom bottled water
  • Brand new products: Custom wedding stickers (perfect for wedding favor seals, bridal shower favor seals, invitations seals, wedding programs, etc.)
  • A new Design Online tool enables people to upload their own images to labels easily and quickly. It's now super easy to add custom monograms and custom calligraphy to custom labels!
  • People can also save their designs and come back and work on them later
Bottle Your Brand is not only for water, either. Check out these adorable custom beer and wine labels!

Custom labels are perfect not only for weddings, but also for showers, bachelorette parties and birthday parties too! Visit their blog for daily ideas.

And now through the end of March, Lucky Orchid Wedding readers can get 10% off their order by using this special promo code: LUCKYORCHID.

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