I’m having so much fun designing and making flowers, and can’t stop thinking about them, so I thought I would share some of my favorite paper flower inspiration with you!
Thuss + Farrell
I received a copy of Paper to Petal by Rebecca Thuss and Patrick Farrell last summer, and it’s been an incredible resource for inspiration and techniques – I highly recommend it! It includes 75 projects, plus hundreds of petal and leaf templates (which are available in PDF form - hugely helpful for printing and cutting them out).
In addition to creating charming paper flowers, Livia Cetti is a gardener and incredible floral designer – somehow I think that comes through in her sweet paper creations. She also has a gorgeous new book out, The Exquisite Book of Paper Flowers.
One of my favorite things about autumn weddings is the incredible richness of color, and Isabel and James’s palette is a perfect example: aubergine, forest green, gold and ivory. Gorgeous! Photographer Sarah Jane Winter captured the rustic elegance of their wedding beautifully in these images…
From the bride: “Staunton is a beautiful part of central Virginia, and represents the state’s mountains and countryside perfectly. We both enjoy the rolling hills of Virginia and wanted a place that represented our love of the outdoors. The Inn at Old Virginia is a gorgeous estate nestled in an idyllic location; with such a picturesque backdrop of the vibrant green cedars, there was really nothing else needed to dress it up. The Inn itself was exactly what I was looking for: a location that could hold the wedding party and close family so that everyone could just sit back and relax for the entire event. The owners were also so special and made the weekend proceed seamlessly.”
Isabel’s favorite part of the day? “James I had a moment just after the ceremony as we were waiting to be introduced where we had a few moments to reflect: wide-eyed, staring at each other, realizing that we were married! It was truly surreal – the actuality of finally being married and what that meant was overwhelming. The man who continues to inspire and pursue me was my husband! It was so special to be able to just hold each other before jumping back into the festivities for a minute.”
The couple had a Quaker-inspired wedding certificate that was signed by each of their guests.
“Having the event at one location for the weekend was perfect. Seeing friends and family come from all over to support and celebrate with us was exactly what made the event so memorable. The ceremony was in the evening, so from when I woke up to when I walked down the aisle I was around my dear girlfriends from all different times of my life. From middle school to present day, having those women was a huge blessing and I was so touched by them being there. “
“Sitting at a community table and having the food served family style was molded after our new business, The Dog and Pig Show,” shares Isabel. “We love having people share memories over great food and good drinks, so we could not imagine a more appropriate time to incorporate that shared pastime than at the reception.”
There were several cakes to choose from: Carrot Cake, Chocolate Raspberry Ganache Cake, Lemon Cake with Blackberry Filling and Vanilla Buttercream, and Chocolate Peanut Butter Cake. On the cake menu, each one was named after one of Isabel’s “house party” girls, as were the signature cocktails on the drink menu.
What inspired you when you were planning your wedding?There were a few images that I kept going back to for inspiration. As a bride, I wanted an aesthetic that reflected our taste and also created a magical evening for our guests. I went with aubergine, forest green, gold and ivory as accent colors. Combined with the outdoor events, those colors created a laid back elegance. I love the juxtaposition of certain elements. Outdoor simplicity with a glamorous tent, rough farm tables with lush and organic flower arrangements… those components along with the twinkle lights were the perfect backdrop for the evening.
What was the best advice you received as a bride?Everyone told me that the day would fly by and to take in every moment. The day did go by fast, but the advice that I appreciated most was from my mom. After the ceremony she told me that James was a man who took things seriously – such as our marriage and his commitment to me. She reminded me how important it would be for me to truly value our marriage daily and never take each other for granted. My mother and father have been married for over 30 years, so her insight was treasured!
What advice do you have for other brides?The day of the ceremony can be daunting and emotionally overwhelming. I would advise taking time to really reflect and soak in the beauty of it all by yourself – if only for a moment – just to take in as much of the extraordinary as possible. So that I could remember everything, I wrote notes to myself throughout the day – things people said to me, how I felt getting into my dress, and other experiences I wanted to be sure to never forget.
From Courtney: Our invites were quite possibly the hardest thing I had to do for my wedding. Given the fact that I design wedding invitations for a living, there was a bit of “gentle ribbing” from friends and family about their expectations. And frankly, designing for yourself is very hard! We didn’t really have a theme going into our wedding but one thing that kept coming up was music and the colors black and white.
I knew I wanted the invite to be focused around a hand drawn illustration since that is what I love to do. We got married in the Dumbo neighborhood of Brooklyn which has some pretty awesome views. There is one iconic street that showcases the Manhattan Bridge with the Empire State Building nestled below, and I chose to draw that as our main image.
My personal favorite detail was the envelope liner. My friend is a photographer and looking through her pictures, I saw one of a guy with knuckle tattoos. As soon as I saw it, I knew I wanted to incorporate that same idea into our suite somehow. Once I realized that “BROOKLYN” fit on the knuckles, it was a done deal!
One of the important things for me was to have the invite sound like how we both actually speak. We have a very dry sense of humor and we really wanted that to come out in our copy.
I really had my heart set on black envelopes so I knew addressing them would be an issue. In came the ridiculously talented Jenna of Love, Jenna calligraphy. She created the perfect look for our suite complete with little details to match back to our design.
I finished the suite off with a black + gold twine from the awesome Knot + Bow, and had a die cut tag created to hold everything together. I love little silhouettes and created one of our hair to use throughout. Overall, we wanted our invites to set the tone for our wedding, but most importantly to make our friends and family laugh.
I always love to see how folks in the wedding industry think about their own weddings, especially when it’s one of our Select vendors! Courtney from Swiss Cottage Designs creates the most whimsical stationery suites, full of playful illustrations and thoughtful details, and she brought that vision to her own Brooklyn wedding last December.
Swiss Cottage Designs, Weddings by Two | Snippet & Ink
“People like to tell you lots of stuff before you get married but the best advice we got was to enjoy one another that night. It’s so easy to get caught up with your friends and family that you forget about your new husband or wife! I made sure that Paul and I spent a lot of time together that night and really had fun together.”
From the bride: “I walked down the aisle to Al Green’s version of ‘I Want To Hold Your Hand.’ It’s a great rendition that is full of soul which makes it hard to sit still. I think this got the guests going because as soon as I rounded the corner to walk down the aisle with my mom and dad, everyone started clapping and cheering for us! It was a pretty tight space so we had to push our way through the crowd to get to Paul at the front. I was smiling ear to ear and laughing hysterically! It was such a great way to kick off the evening and is a moment I’ll always remember.”
Music was a recurring theme in Courtney and Paul’s wedding, starting with the RSVP cards designed to look like old records. Another musical detail? Set on the back of each chair at the ceremony, and placed around the restaurant, were little tent-folded cards with quotes from favorite love songs.
Courtney designed and created tons of fun little details for the wedding day, like a large welcome sign with an itinerary of the evening’s events, temporary tattoos, souvenir mugs, and drink stirrers. I think my personal favorite is the mini button pins that said “Bride,” “Groom,” and “Neutral.”
I asked if they included any traditions in their wedding: “We actually did the opposite and broke most traditions. We weren’t really trying to, but we felt that so many didn’t feel natural to us so we just decided to bypass them. However, we did do a first dance which was really special.”
“For us, it was all about the music. We wanted to take our guests on a musical journey, if you will, from the 1950’s all the way through the 1990’s. Our DJ Ben Carlin the best 90’s mashup ever! I always disliked being at a wedding when you’re up and down because the DJ is all over the place with his choices. We wanted this night to be all about love and music and in the end, it was.”
Why did you choose this location for your wedding?We knew we wanted to have the wedding in Brooklyn since this is where we met, fell in love and currently live. With our hectic work lives, a restaurant venue made it really easy to not have to think about the nitty gritty details like rentals, catering, etc. We also loved that we could take a taxi to and from the venue the night of the wedding – it felt really local and easy which we loved. Plus, Dumbo is such a great neighborhood that we knew our out-of-town guests would love.
What inspired you when you were planning your wedding? To be honest, we were inspired most by the idea of one big party. Working in weddings, I’ve been privy to all tiers of wedding planning. I knew that for us, we wanted to have one big throw down where everyone, no matter how they knew us, would come in and have the best night. We set the tone by creating really lighthearted save-the-dates and invitations that conveyed our theme of fun and party. We interjected humor wherever we could, we wanted everyone to feel comfortable and happy, not stuffy and bored.
What advice do you have for other brides? Don’t get lost in the traditions, details or what your best friend did. Make it your own no matter what your friends and family say. At the end of the day, its your wedding and your moment to cherish. And usually, those critics come around and end up loving all your personal touches!
Do you have any budget tips for other brides? Pick your battles. If paper is important, make that a priority. If the cake is all you care about, spend the most on that. Unless you have a bottomless budget, you can’t have it all. It’s good to prioritize and find what matters most to you. Then do whatever you can to nail those items down and make them perfect, the rest will fall into place.