Dream, create, celebrate!
A Lavish Affair is a collaborative, fun-loving team of event planners, stylists and designers dedicated to creating thoughtful and stylish dream weddings. They deliver personalised planning with warmth, practicality and imagination. Flawlessly fusing sophisticated style with bespoke, unique touches. They focus not only on an exquisite finished result, but also on their clients’ experience: taking you on an amazing journey as an integral part of your creating your special day.
We spoke to Founder & Principal Planner of A Lavish Affair, Marisa Welcome.
Modern Wedding: Tell us a little about yourself.
Marisa: A Lavish Affair have been curating and specialising in weddings since 2001. Our world of weddings is filled with inspiration that embraces elegance and encourages sophistication and style, while remaining true to the love story behind every wedding.
Our team are really passionate about all things weddings. We love the creative process in which we work with our clients and get to hear their stories and ideas. We take those dreams and help them create a wedding day that is not only visually breathtaking, but one that is a journey, a memorable experience for beautiful couples and their guests. We feel privileged to be an integral part of creating these wonderful celebrations.
MW: How did you get started as a stylist?
Marisa: From humble beginnings in 2001, we set out to help couples planning their dream day. There are so many questions couples have, so many unknowns, with an expert in your corner eliminates all of that guess work! The more events we created, and the more couples who came knocking on our door, we discovered how equally important ‘wedding planning’ and ‘wedding styling’ is. The day needs to reflect our couples' personalities and there are so many unique ways to incorporate each individual’s story. We work with couples from the get go as their wedding planner, working through budgets, choosing the main suppliers - with a view of the bigger picture. As the planner, we found we were at a vantage point knowing a whole lot more about our couples and their wedding day to enable us to design the event from a stylist’s perspective. Our service evolved in 2008 providing both these services.
MW: What colours and colour palette combinations do you love for next 12 months?
Marisa: We have been working with so many palettes and they’re all amazing. If we had to choose our top three…
- Orange & Pink – A romantic combination of soft pink, apricot, coral and fuschia works well all year round.
- Yellow & Mint – In Summer and Spring this happy colour works well in outdoor spaces with lots of greenery.
- Violets & Blue – Winter time you can’t go past Australian natives and succulents in green, violets and blue.
MW: What are your favourite new styling trends for 2016/2017?
We love the variety available in menus nowadays, so mix it up! The majority of weddings you go to you have the entrée, main and dessert but what if that could change? Food is such a big part of our lives these days, guests are more health conscious and we as stylists feel food and the way in which it is served can become part of the décor and the experience. We like pushing the boundaries. If your friends are foodies, a degustation with paired wines would go down a treat. For more casual, light-hearted celebratory events we like the use of street food trucks or for pre-dinner/supper entertainment there are numerous food cart services available. There are so many options e.g. tacos, paella, gelato, churros, crème brûlée and so on.
Everyone is getting creative with wedding signage and the use of typography throughout the entire day. From a personalised place card to the social hashtag, type is everywhere you look. As organisers we’re tempted to label everything with clear instructions, however, as stylists we understand there is a balance. A few well-placed signs or a creative way to use typography can add to your day’s wow factor. For example we recently had guests names laser-cut from wood as a place setting. This looked elegant and different from your regular place card.
Who doesn’t love shiny or sparkly elements. The use of copper and rose/yellow gold can add luxe to any table or in a design element such as your invitations. Picture a soft grey linen with bright florals paired with gold flatware or coloured glassware, this instantly lifts the look taking it from romantic and pretty to sophisticated elegance and luxe. Similarly a simple ivory silk card invitation is taken to the next level with a little foiled script font. Simple yet elegant.
MW: What are your five favourite styling elements to work with right now and why?
A huge difference can be made in the look and feel of a wedding by using florals and lots of them. The key is to look at the time of year, it's often best to work with the flower varieties that will be in season – this ensures they are at their best. As much as we all love a peony, they are not readily available all year round and can be a disappointment to brides that find this out three-quarters of the way through their planning.
We, in particular, look at the time of year, the colourings at your venue and use David Austin Roses quite regularly because they are available for a large portion of the year and come in a range of beautiful colours.
The Food Cart
There’s always that lull between the ceremony and reception, or later in the night when we all get the munchies, this is the time to bring out something fun and delicious! A food cart is always a winner, there are so many options nowadays, our favourite The Crème Brûlée Cart, or The Churros Cart.
White restaurant linens always make us cringe, we always like to add a touch of softness and elegance to a table setting by starting with a good base. If you have to go white opt for a finer weave, or sheer overlay. Neutrals in ivory, latte and more popular at the moment grey can change the tone of an entire reception room. A cost-effective way to make a huge change to a room.
I know this may be an obvious one, but the lighting plays a massive part in the look and feel of a wedding. Especially for a garden wedding, we love the use of festoon or fairy lighting. It gives that magical twinkle and makes for a romantic ambience.
Coloured Glassware & Flatware
That added touch of luxury. It always seems like such a shame to make a table look beautiful and then have it finished with some frumpy catering cutlery.
MW: What are your top 3 tips for brides wanting to create unique wedding style?
Make it yours
I know there are so many options out there, but make sure you love everything about your day. If you want a blue gown, do that and be proud of it.
Start with a colour
We find that is the best place to start. You’ll be amazed at how quickly things fall into place once you have a direction.
Mix & Match
There are so many wedding themes out there, but that doesn’t mean that your style fits into just one. Mix and match to make it perfect for you. Whether it is classical romantic or elegant whimsy, or any combination of themes that you love, there’s always a way to make it work.
MW: If you were designing your own wedding, how would you style it?
Marisa: This has got to be the hardest question for any stylist to answer. With a mind constantly on weddings it’s hard to select just one of the millions of ideas. In saying that, we think keeping things simple yet amazing is key. Something with a small number of guests, an amazing five-course menu, an abundance of bright florals and lots of cocktails! Pure sophistication.
Stylist & Wedding Planner A Lavish Affair Photography Nikole Ramsay Hair Dani North Makeup Rebecca Brown Bride’s gown Alex Perry Prop Hire Place Settings Reception venue The Cullen Hotel Ceremony venue Victoria Gardens, Prahran Caterer Bright Young Things Florist White Moss Cake Cake Face Stationery Bespoke Letterpress Bomboniere Flower Wrap Station