Wednesday, April 4, 2012

LOUNGING AT YOUR WEDDING

It may have taken Ottawa a little while to catch on, but over the past two years it has become more and more difficult to glance through a bridal magazine or wedding blog and not see a bride and groom showing off the posh lounge area at their reception. Renting lounge furniture is now the rage. It not only adds a unique design element to your wedding but also offers your guests a chic yet comfortable space to kick back, relax and mingle with others who were not seated at their table for dinner.
For couples looking to create a fabulous space like this at their upcoming wedding, check out Mikaza Home. Their original boutique shop can still be found at 1154 Bank Street in Ottawa but due to popular demand, Mikaza is now celebrating the opening of an additional showroom at 120 Du Portage in Hull. All orders placed at their new location during the month of April 2010 will receive 10% off their order!

Cassandra Cherneski of The Florida Bride's Blog offers the following five tips as general guidelines to creating a fabulous lounge space at your wedding.
Choose the physical space.
For some reception venues, this may be easier than others. Perhaps your venue already has a separate little enclave that would be perfect for a tucked-away lounge space. But if you’re dealing with an enormous ballroom, you’ll have to get a little bit creative. Try using pipe and drape to delineate a separate area for your lounge. Or group your dinner tables in one section, and place your lounge area in its own corner of the ballroom.
For reception venues with outdoor space, this is the perfect place to put a lounge, provided the weather will be comfortable. The comfortable furnishings and outdoor breezes will definitely inspire your guests to put your lounge area to good use!
Select your furnishings.
Your furniture is the foundation for the entire look of the lounge. Typical lounge furniture items include sofas, loveseats, benches, and ottomans. You can mix and match these items to create a customized space all your own. Most major metropolitan areas have a rental company that provides these items, so try googling “wedding lounge furniture” and see what you find. Your event planner should have connections as well, and may even be able to offer you a discount!
Some tips for your furniture: I love to keep the furnishings all one color. This way you can create a neutral base for your accessories, which helps them really pop. I also like to match the styling of your furniture to the overall feel of the event. For example, for a shabby-chic wedding I would choose Victorian-looking furniture with curved backs, rolled arms, and carved wooden feet. For a modern wedding, try all-white leather, and geometrically shaped pieces.
Pick your pillows.
Almost every successful lounge area uses pillows to create “pops” of color and to customize the space. Depending on your overall look, you could get away with just a few pillows, or you could use tons of them. Typically, your rental company has these; but you can also find great pillows at home-d├ęcor stores, often at prices comparable to or less than rental prices. Use your pillows to tie the space to other areas of your reception, and to incorporate your wedding colors. Look for pillows with unique textures and embellishments. You may also consider pillows made of luxe fabrics, such as dupioni silk or tucked taffeta.

Accessorize the space.
Don’t forget the little touches that add character and personality to your space! Think residential elements: carpets, lamps, candles, floral arrangements. Incorporate the unexpected. If your lounge space is outdoors, don’t neglect your overhead space. Can you string lights or paper lanterns above? If your space is near a tree, think pomander balls or votive lanterns hanging from the branches.
One caveat when adding accessories: keep it simple. You don’t want your sleek space to become cluttered.

Light up your lounge.
Last but not least, add lighting! It may be as simple as groupings of votives or pillar candles on “coffee tables.” Or you may want to rent elaborate par can lighting. For those going for the modern look, some rental companies are offering LED “glow cubes” and benches. For a beachy theme, the tiki torch really sets a mood. You want your guests to bask in a sultry glow in your lounge space. Leave the lighting low enough to be romantic, but don’t leave your guests in the dark!

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