Anne and Archie both have careers in entertainment, with a long family history in the business, so their film inspired wedding was a perfect fit for the pair, who transformed the L.A. venue, Carondelet House into a magical setting full of Hollywood inspired details. With La Boheme Events as the team behind the planning, and Scott Clark Photo there to capture the day, you absolutely can’t miss all the fun from today’s feature!
What made the wedding special and unique?
Given the “movie” title from the proposal (see below), our careers in entertainment, family ties to show business — Archie’s father designed several iconic movie posters with Archie’s mother writing the corresponding copylines and Anne’s great grandfather owned several movie theaters — and love of classic film, it seemed fitting for us to have an old Hollywood inspired wedding. To that end, guests were invited to attend the world premiere of “Marry Me, Darling!” with a film one-sheet inspired invitation designed my stepfather, a graphic designer.
The “premiere” took place at Carondelet House in Los Angeles, a restored villa from the 1920s which was transformed for the evening to harken back to the golden age of cinema, with period-era family photos and heirlooms sprinkled throughout. Outside the venue, classic movie posters and a sandwich board featuring the enlarged invitation greeted guests and they were further welcomed with gold popcorn boxes with our monogram and Archie’s childhood friend playing famous Hollywood scores on the piano.
We wanted our guests to feel like they were attending a special party at someone’s private home, and encouraged them to mix and mingle throughout the evening and dine, drink and party in the venue’s various rooms and courtyards. We also wanted to carry out the Hollywood theme throughout the evening and named our food stations and signature cocktails after classic films –“The Thin Man” and “The Vivacious Lady”– and had cocktail napkins featuring libation related quotes from old movies. During the cocktail hour, the band “Vintage Confidential” played standards from the 20s, 30s and 40s which helped to create the mood of a time gone by.
As one guest remarked, “may ‘Marry Me, Darling!’ run forever”!
Tell us about the gown and where/how you found it!
I found a few dresses I liked in Los Angeles, but decided it would be fun to at least look at dresses with my mom during a Mother’s Day trip to San Francisco. My mom found San Francisco based designer, Amy Kuschel online and her studio turned out to be a few blocks from our hotel. Having lived in San Francisco from junior high through high school, I liked the idea of wearing something that was made and designed in the city and loved Amy’s designs. My mom, sister and two close friends and I had a wonderful appointment with Teresa at Amy’s studio. Teresa was very warm and when I told her about our old Hollywood themed wedding and showed her photos of the venue, she emerged with a wedding dress that was perfect for me and our wedding. As soon as I put on the dress, it just felt “right” and I loved the special details like the slit in the front, jeweled belt, cap sleeves and plunging back. Serendipitously my dress is called “Rita” after Hollywood starlet, Rita Hayworth. As a fellow redhead, I’ve long considered Hayworth a style icon and even dressed up as her at age 9 at costume party — an overly ambitious costume at that age as no one had a clue who I was. Down the street from our wedding venue lies the aptly named “Hayworth” theater. Some of my favorite photographs from the wedding were taken in front of the Hayworth’s marquee. Since there are few opportunities in life, when you get away with a “costume change”, for the dancing I changed into a beaded cocktail dress purchased from Neiman Marcus that evoked art deco glamour.
What were some touches added to make it personal?
There were a lot of personalized details that went into the day. One of our favorites was our “program” which was designed to look like an old Hollywood gossip magazine. Featured inside was a one line biographical fact about each guest in attendance that somehow related to entertainment. This was a great surprise for our guests and it sparked many wonderful connections and conversations at the wedding. We had a fun time working on this project together and end up learning some new things about our friends and family in the process! This project would not have been possible without two very dear friends who helped with the art direction, copy editing and printing.
Another meaningful detail was the inclusion of my grandmother who passed away a few months before the wedding. Since she and I were very close, I knew I wanted to honor her in some way. After she passed, we discovered that she had a large collection of beautiful, vintage handkerchiefs in their original packaging. We displayed the laundered handkerchiefs along with a photo of my grandmother at the entrance to the ceremony, with a sign encouraging guests to keep a handkerchief for their happy tears.
What was the most memorable part of the day?
Although the day was filled with many special moments, without a doubt the highlight for us was the ceremony. We were fortunate to be married by a close friend who we worked with to craft a customized ceremony that was equal parts heartfelt emotion and humor. We wrote our own vows which we decided not to share with each other until we recited them in front of our friends and family at the wedding, which made them all the more meaningful. From Archie jogging down the aisle to the score of his favorite film, “Raiders of the Lost Ark” played on violin and guitar, to our “best boy” (a/k/a ring bearer) commencing the ceremony with a clapboard and our officiant, yelling “Action!” and a suspended chuppah made from my grandmother’s tablecloth, it was definitely not the typical wedding ceremony but it was very true to who we are as a couple and told our story perfectly. We both consider the ceremony to be our finest production to date!
Tell us how you met and became engaged.
As my husband likes to say, we met on a little place called “the internet.” Since we both love board games, on our first date we played an intense two person game of Scattergories. Claiming victory, Archie won a batch of my homemade dairy-free snickerdoodles. As a nod to our first date, I made the same cookies to include in the welcome bags for our out of town guests, with a little note explaining their significance.
We love to entertain by hosting game nights at our house. When Archie suggested having some friends over for a game night, I assumed it would be a regular night of fun with friends. Little did I know that Archie had much bigger plans (that our guests were in on) and that this would be no typical “game night”. In a way that recalled our first evening together, he proposed in the middle of a game that included a special customized card. The game was “Beyond Balderdash” and the category was a movie title: “Marry Me, Darling!” The invented movie had an answer, “A writer falls in love with a lawyer and a few years later gets down on one knee and asks, ‘Will you marry me?’.” After getting over my initial shock, when Archie did in fact get down on one knee, I said “Yes!”. It was such a thoughtful, personal and creative proposal and I’m still impressed that he was able to surprise me!
“Marry Me, Darling!” ended up being a pivotal part of the wedding’s design as guests were invited to attend the film’s “premiere.”
Vendors: Photography: Scott Clark Photo // Event Planning: La Boheme Events // Venue: Carondelet House // Bartender: Pharmacie LA // DJ: Dart DJ // Florals: Stella Bloom Designs // Catering: Tres LA // Cakes: MJB Cakes