FLOWERS: The Design Studio is Awash in Spring Flowers!

April 9, 2014

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Can you smell that? If only we could share the delicious, sweet perfumes wafting from these sensational Spring flowers!

Truly, nothing beats arriving to the floral studio, the heart of our 50,000 square foot design studio and warehouse, to see the floral boxes stacked high with gorgeous flowers. Seasonal flowers shipped in from local growers and from flower farms around the globe! It can take teams of our floral designers DAYS to process all of the flowers, freeing them from their cold, tissue-beds, and welcoming them into the warm water to stretch their stems. They will all be partying hard in some of the biggest ballrooms in Atlantic City! Every bucket of blue Hydrangea, green Viburnum, pink Parrot Tulips, purple Tulips, coral Peonies, purple Vanda orchids, green Ranunculus, yellow and red Parrot Tulips, white Calla Lilies, yellow Daffodils, red Double Tulips, white Casablanca Lilies, plum purple Sweet Peas, and purple Lisianthus will be displayed to perfection in tomorrow night’s corporate awards gala at the Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa. So many blooms, so little time…

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VIDEO: Real Wedding Highlight Film of Sara and Sean’s Ritz-Carlton Philadelphia Wedding

April 4, 2014

We’re going to start dubbing Fridays and “Film Fridays” as there are so many sensational wedding and bar/bat mitzvah videos to share!

Wedding videography, or filmography, or cinema; however you refer to it these days in modern terms, has come such a long way in artistry, technology, and emotion. We truly love experiencing each celebration not just as a highlight reel, but as the love story it represents, and which can be shared over and over again with others.

The talent, professionalism, and dedication to the film craft is shown beautifully in CinemaCake’s wedding highlight film of Sara and Sean’s recent wedding at The Ritz-Carlton, Philadelphia. Enjoy!

REAL STORIES: Jake’s Brown, Black & Gold Plaid Bar Mitzvah at The Phoenixville Foundry, Philadelphia

March 5, 2014


In putting together the final design details for this weekend’s super special mitzvah celebration at the Phoenixville Foundry, we thought about the sunshine-filled bar mitzvah we planned there for Jake in 2011. And when we say sunshine, we mean bright, happy sunflowers, mango calla lilies, coral amaryllis, and tangerine roses. Could we be dreaming about the warmth of summer? Are we ready for Spring? Oh yes, we are definitely ready to leave the cold, gray days of Winter behind. {Photo by Susan Beard Design}

Originally posted on Evantine Design Blog:

We planned and designed a family-style celebration for Jake’s bar mitzvah at the historic Phoenixville Foundry in suburban Philadelphia.

[Photos courtesy of Susan Beard Design]

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REAL STORIES: A Glamorous Black, White and Purple Wedding at the Please Touch Museum

February 20, 2014

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Last Fall, we designed this lush, romantic, and oh-so-glamorous wedding for Josh and Regina at the Please Touch Museum. Located in Memorial Hall, a National Historic Landmark built in 1876 for the Centennial Exhibition celebrating the country’s 100th birthday, this Grand Dame of Philadelphia party spaces is a magnificent location for a wedding celebration. Add to the already spectacular architecture some sexy black and white decor, a whole lot of purple flowers, and oodles of romance, and you have one extraordinary event. But first, let’s get the party started off with a little softer, a little muted palette…

{Photos courtesy of Drew Noel Photography}

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The bride, wearing a sparkling, exquisitely detailed wedding gown by Allure Couture, carried a bouquet of white Cymbidium orchids. The stems of the bouquet were wrapped in white organza and, for a little “something old and something borrowed,” an additional piece of fabric was added from the bride’s mother’s wedding dress. Talk about a stunner! We loved that Regina wore her long blonde hair down in soft, sexy waves with a wispy, ethereal wedding veil to enhance her silhouette. What a beauty…

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The Please Touch Museum offers all kinds of fun, lighthearted backdrops for bridal photos in addition to the scenic, majestic architecture everyone loves for the formals. But this Alice in Wonderland exhibit always brings a smile as who could resist hamming it up in there? And now, let’s bring on the PURPLE!

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The seven bridal attendants wore sophisticated, one shoulder black bridesmaids dresses, black strappy heels, and amethyst chandelier earrings. We designed textural bouquets of purple flowers that included Vanda Orchids, Dendrobium Orchid blossoms, French Stock, Roses, Hydrangea, Mini Calla Lilies, Tulips, and Lisianthus. For a little extra touch of glam for the ladies in black, we wrapped the stems of their purple bouquets with rhinestone cuffs.

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Unlike many of Philadelphia’s off-premise facilities, the Please Touch Museum offers so many lovely, well-appointed spaces for all the various aspects of a wedding celebration, from dressing and getting ready, to formal photographs indoors or out, children’s activities, or, for Jewish weddings, the Ketubah Signing. From the Ketubah Signing, our wedding planners gathered up the bridal party and family members for the ceremony processional as the guests were ready for the main event!

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The South Foyer of Memorial Hall was set in a traditional theater-style with gold Chivari dinner chairs facing a solid wall of white draping hung in the three decorative arches. A long, dramatic center aisle was created by layering a wide satin aisle runner on top of a white carpet runner. Along the length of the aisle we placed our Lucite pedestals holding stemmed glass hurricanes, and at the base of the risers we placed multiple glass cylinders filled with water and candles. White organza fabric was draped in soft waves down the aisle to prevent guests from accidentally kicking any of the low candles, something that can happen very easily and that we work hard to prevent!

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At the far end of the ceremony aisle we placed the large, traditional garden-style Chuppah as the central focal point in the space. Because, OF COURSE, it is the highlight of the celebration!

Our beautiful bride provided many photos of her dream wedding canopy and our tall iron Chuppah structure was just PERFECT to make that dream come true! The entire Chuppah was covered in gorgeous flowers and seasonal branches in shades of ivory, white, cream, and soft variegated shades of celadon, lavender, periwinkle, and blush. A combination of Garden Roses, French imported Roses, and Hydrangea were the main blooms used to bring that color palette to life. Below the Chuppah we placed our petite iron branch table to hold the Kiddush cup and Breaking Glass. Soft uplighting on the Chuppah itself married with delicate dappled light underneath and overtop for a romantic atmosphere.

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After the ceremony, while guests were wandering through the playful museum exhibits and enjoying delicious food from Brûlée Catering in the Carousel, our design team turned the ceremony space into a stunning place card setting. First, we moved the large floral Chuppah to the center of South Foyer to serve as the focal centerpiece of the room. Then, we placed two white lacquer rectangular tables with mirror tops on either side of the Chuppah to extend the entire decorative statement. Along the length of the escort card tables, we placed a series of glass vessels of varying heights holding floating candles and votives. As beautiful as they always are, the bridal bouquets were placed in tall stemmed glass vessels on these tables to be admired by the guests as part of the decor. Elegant plum-colored place cards were provided by the client and set out in an orderly fashion on both tables offering guests plenty of space to find their card with ease.

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Guests were invited into a dramatically lit Hamilton Hall for dinner and dancing. The black and white design foundation played out throughout the dining room in the glamorous white sequin and white metallic rosette linens, as well as the Black Ruched Chairs, White Pop Chairs, white or black satin napkins secured in rhinestone buckles, and lacquered black urns and white glass vases. Then, we layered on the purple in one lush arrangement after another around the ballroom. Monochromatic floral displays of Magenta Dendrobium Orchids, Purple Vanda Orchids, Lavender Hydrangea, or Plum Mini Calla Lilies blended in with mixed floral centerpieces composed of Roses, Stock, Tulips, Lisianthus, Hydrangea, and Orchids.

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The bride and groom’s head table was covered in layers of rich fabric including white matte satin linens and a delicate sheer organza rosette with black edging. White Pop Chairs with clear Lucite backs were placed around the entire table (not just one side) for bridal party seating, and white cleanly folded double-sided satin napkins were slipped into black velvet napkin rings with sequin buckles. Along the length of Table of Honor, we placed a low, lush design of purple flowers in long black vessels. Crystal globe and cut crystal candle holders on tall, statuesque glass bases with vibrant designs of flowers were placed on the table for height.

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Such a beautiful couple and one incredible wedding! We thank our lovely bride and groom, as well as their families, for letting Evantine Design be a part of their marriage celebration. We invite you to take a look at the rest of their photos below to see more of this stunning event! Congratulations again Josh and Regina!

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These stunning photos, right down to the last sensual image that is so beautifully lit, were provided courtesy of Drew Noel Photography. To see other weddings and events we have designed and planned at the Please Touch Museum, take a look HERE for an explosion of cherry blossoms, and HERE for a whimsical rainbow of personality!

Fragrance Bar for Mackenzie’s Bat Mitzvah at Vie

February 8, 2014

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Our Fragrance Bar is just too “scentsational” not to share before the party is over! For tonight’s pretty in pink bat mitzvah celebration for our chic young client, Miss Mackenzie, we styled up a glamorous “make-your-own-perfume station” for her to enjoy with friends.

We created an entire Perfumaria boutique in the kids cocktail area, allowing for plenty of space to display the 14 various essential oils, from Rose to Lily, Pink Grapefruit, Vanilla, Lavender and more, on our elegant mirrored tables. We even set out fragrance recipe cards “noting” (get it?) suggested fragrance combinations that guests could try, should they need inspiration.

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Of course, we’re known for our well thought out and detailed displays, so we also provided vessels to hold the fragrance tester strips, as well as multiple Apothecary jars filled with colored water, fresh flower petals, herbs, spices, and teas to represent the selection of scents. Truly one of the most memorable bat mitzvah activities we have styled up and we even have several brides interested in incorporating the activity into their bridal showers!

Now, as the avid fragrance lovers that we are, if you want the REAL thing in fragrance, stop by our boutique at The Rittenhouse for a bottle of sweet smelling Bond No. 9. (shameless Valentine’s Day plug…)

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A Hand-Painted Party for Throwback Thursday

January 30, 2014

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Embracing the whole “Throwback Thursday” concept really can be an entertaining way to share some of the amazing events we have produced over the years. Events that exist in our memories as well as in tiny 4 x 6 photos buried in dusty boxes that rarely see the light of day! Which is a shame really, as party planners and event designers with decades of experience in conceptualizing events we are bound to have tackled most themes once, if not twice!

In today’s event scene we see the obsession with calligraphy, painting and illustration continues to dazzle and intensify, making its way into party design and scenic decor in bolder ways than just on paper. Well, like most things in life, that’s a design trend that has been tackled before. Like 15 to 20 years ago! That’s right, what’s old really is new again.

Cigna Corporate Party at Academy Music

These images are from the 1998 Academy Ball Cocktail Reception hosted by CIGNA held in the rehearsal hall at the Academy of Music in Philadelphia. Generally, The rehearsal hall is pretty bare bones, so Evantine Design was hired to bring in everything to create the desired environment, from walls, rooms, lighting, flowers, rentals, and kitchen space. The design inspiration for the event was the post-modern theater and movie set designs from the 1930’s-1950’s which were designed to be viewed as props and not real, but at the same time to evoke a sense of place and time to transport the audience away from reality. Deep stuff, right? Absolutely.

Our theme was a town square in France, complete with café, walls, park benches, home facades, shops, street carts, and a central “fountain” that guests would wander around or gaze upon just as they would in a small town in France. All in all, we designed, illustrated and hand-painted over 100 panels which were then used to create the streets of the village. To ensure we had thought of every single detail of the town square, right down to the loaves of bread and window shades, we put up the entire set in our greenhouse (back then we did not have the warehouse and design studio we now call home) and then pulled it all apart to put it together again on site for the event. With design this specific, practice makes perfect!

Along the hallway leading into the rehearsal hall, we created an allée of faux trees in a similar illustrated manner as the sets designed for the main room.  The difference being that as you passed by the trees (or upon leaving) you saw the unfinished backs with braces and location markings (and sandbags). This concept of letting the guests experience the behind the scenes AND the finished effects let the attendees feel as if they were part of the theater stage and were characters in our story.

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CIGNA was a major sponsor for the Academy Ball for many years and sponsored this annual cocktail party.  We transformed the space year after year to the point where it became the talk of the ball and every year, guests wondered if they would walk into a faux French town square, a serene Zen Japanese Garden, a rocking 1950’s diner or futuristic Philadelphia (among others that we created for the client).

Happy Throwback Thursday!

PRESS: Brian Kappra Names Two of His Favorite Local Venues in Bride’s Magazine

January 8, 2014

Best Wedding  Venues on the East Coast Brian Kappra Evantine

Not only is Evantine’s owner and Creative Director, Brian Kappra, a Philadelphia area native, but he’s been planning events across the Northeast for over 30 years! As a result, it’s no wonder Brian is called upon by magazine editors for his insight into some of the best places to get married.  Together with other wedding experts across the nation, Brian is featured in the recent issue of BRIDES Magazine talking about the Best Wedding Venues in America.

Looking specifically at the Greater Philadelphia region, Brian loves the classic elegance of outdoor tented weddings  at Andalusia and the sexy, urban loft vibe found at Front and Palmer. Why are they high on the list? Well, there are many reasons, from the scenic views and romantic settings, to the blank slate “make it your own” qualities that both offer our brides and grooms. Take a look at just some of the fabulous weddings Brian has designed at these wedding venues:  Vibrantly Hip Outdoor Wedding at Andalusia; Lilly Pulitzer-inspired Wedding at Andalusia; and a Candlelit Wedding at Front and Palmer.

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