Two weeks ago, on Saturday evening, we hosted a lovely little bridal shower for Gabrielle, one of my daughter’s Sarah’s closest friends. There were fourteen of us seated for a very intimate dinner.
I’ll never forget last Christmas morning when the phone rang and it was Gabrielle telling us all how she had just become engaged, we were all so overjoyed, every one of us dropping many happy tears.
Like most brides during this extraordinary time, her wedding plans have become a bit unhinged. There were four of us planning this shower party for her, and we wanted to make it a very special evening, a celebration where she would simply absolutely glow.
One of her favorite cocktails is an Aperol Spritz, so we used that as inspiration while planning her party. Lexi designed the invitation using oranges and flower blossoms on black card stock, switching to white card stock for the menu and place cards. Lexi also designed an amazing step and repeat, using interlocking D’s to highlight her soon-to-be married name.
Originally, I was planning on cooking until I got smart and phoned in for a caterer. Our go-to caterer is Giancarlo’s, I can count on them for delicious food and upbeat and professional service. I also handled the rentals; I love having matching chairs for guests when it’s a formal party and at this point my matched dining chair game only goes up to eight. I do have tons of plates and can pull of serving multiple guests with my china on hand, wine glasses not so much as it’s the end of summer and we’ve been non-stop entertaining small family and friend groups and we’ve had such a great time that our wine glass collection has dwindled simply by lots of good hard use. Mismatched wine glasses it was, along with some borrowed silver flatware mixed in with my small silver collection.
Sarah did an amazing job sourcing the wine and creating her always outstanding play lists, our dinner party of course turned into the very best dance party.
The bride-to-be’s mother and sister dropped off caseloads of Prosecco and fresh flowers. The afternoon of the party was a huge floral arranging session where me, Lexi, Sarah, Caroline and my dear friend Jackie all cut and arranged flowers that we placed all over the entire front of the house. There were flowers everywhere, so amazing.
I also rented four candelabras to be placed along two eight-foot tables, our dream was to be seated outside. We had the entire party staged outdoors on my back patio until the temperature started dropping and we decided last minute to move it all inside. Our hustle game strong. Four candelabras on my indoor dining table looked heavy and crowded so we opted for three and placed the outlier in the living room, along with dozens of votives scattered all over, it was all quite dramatic.
Gabrielle wore white, as she should, and looked one hundred percent gorgeous. Her bridesmaids, all in sequins, how fabulous is that? I wore a new dress from Lafayette 148, and decorated ‘The Naked Cake’ with cut edible flowers from our country house garden.
The guest list was small, if you count the bride and her mom and her sister and me and Caroline, Sarah, and Lexi, there were seven others, Lexi’s mom and Gabrielle’s very closest friends. My preference for sure is small seated dinners, and this was the perfect combination of all very beautiful women around the table. Maddie, Gabrielle’s sister, and Dina, Gabrielle’s mom, gave amazing toasts and tributes to everlasting love. James, the handsome groom-to-be, came early for some photos with our favorite photographer Sarah Bridgeman, and then arrived with armfuls of yet even more flowers and to kiss the bride-to-be, it was all so romantic.
We felt happy and accomplished. We celebrated Gabrielle with all that we could; food, wine, music, flowers, candles, and cake, all within a circle of love and deep friendship. Congratulations Gabrielle and James, may you continue to create many special memories along your lifetime ahead of love and togetherness.
Every day dress, wedding shower for fourteen.