Oh my gawd! Those gorgeous girls over at Pocketful of Dreams – part of the Love My Dress team of regular contributors have gone and totally recreated their concept of a mood board/inspiration board. Let's face it, there are a myriad of mood-boards across the blogosphere right now, so we want those featured on Love My Dress to be truly engaging and stand out from the crowd.
I love what Michelle and Vicki have done with these boards – wedding venues are usually the very first thing that a bride and groom look at when they become engaged. Once the venue is booked, so much of everything else can be researched and booked and it all falls in to place. I love the idea of taking a type of venue and working on a set of mood boards to inspire how you plan your wedding around that venue. It's brilliant too that for their very first venue inspired mood-board, the girls have chosen Dalston Heights as their inspiration. Dalston Heights is where we shot the images for my book, Style Me Vintage: Weddings – Michelle was a key member of the team, designing and styling props and scenes that complimented the various vintage eras addressed in the book, so has a fabulous idea of how this particular style of venue can be styled and what elements you can bring in to complement the whole vibe. So, over to you Michelle and Vicki, you gorgeous creative duo!
Here at Pocketful of Dreams we love to design creative, original and beautiful concepts for your inspiration and enjoyment. But when you're planning your wedding day, it's important to think about how your design ideas can work within the context of the venue you have chosen. So recently we've been looking at some of our favourite venues up and down the country and creating design concepts, especially for them. And today, we're looking at warehouses…
Warehouse and industrial venues offer a totally raw, gritty and urban experience, with surroundings that are bursting with character and history. Original brick walls, peeling paintwork, wooden floors and exposed beamed ceilings offer a creative and hip alternative to the traditional wedding venue. A much more informal and laidback option, warehouses allow you the opportunity to be a little quirkier and artistic with your styling, injecting plenty of fun and personality.
It is definitely possible to create something effortlessly stylish and timeless in a warehouse or industrial building, however you do need to consider that it takes much more creativity and vision to turn it from an industrial shell into an intimate and welcoming space.
So to help you on your way here are our expert tips on planning a Warehouse Wedding, showing our own vision for a venue we have lots of love for, Dalston Heights. One half of team Pocketful of Dreams worked in this space for 3 days helping Annabel with the photoshoot for her book Style Me Vintage: Weddings. Michelle was responsible for designing and styling a number of details and decor set-ups, working with all the quirks and eccentricities the space offered and so has a really great understanding of this most unusual of venues…
Our look for this warehouse wedding is effortlessly cool with a mix of industrial, vintage and quirky styling touches to create an eclectic and fun look. With a colour palette of warm tones including muted oranges, yellows, leafy greens and gold, our look will stand out yet complement the cooler, darker shades typically found in warehouse venues. Our aim is to create a look which is unconventional and bold yet fun and inviting; one perfectly suited to the rugged setting.
Of course as wedding planners we're not just about the pretty, but also consider the practical elements of a wedding. Here are a few things to consider about warehouse weddings:
- It's more than likely that the building is a little dilapidated or run-down in areas but this is part of the magic and charm of a warehouse or industrial space. An older building will be full of character but it may also be a little dirtier, so be prepared to work with that as no matter how much cleaning takes place prior there will still be dust and dirt to contend with. Make sure you ask the venue what they offer in terms of cleaning prior to your day.
- Speak to the venue about the heating / cooling system within the space, an old building will more than likely have old pipes and a rickety system so consider whether or not you need to bolster with heaters in winter or fans in summer. Ask about the windows – do they open? If not ask, about humidity.
- Think about the acoustics and work with someone who has a good understanding of this subject. Big buildings with open ceilings and hard walls will magnify noise and bounce it around quite a lot so you want any noise from adjoining buildings or other floors to be kept to an absolute minimum at key times of your day when guests need to hear what's going on, like the speeches. Then when it's party-time you want to make sure it's a fabulous atmosphere not a full-on rave so work with acoustics specialists who can advise you appropriately.
- Ask about furniture – your venue may be filled with reclaimed treasures but are they event appropriate? We love the battered and weathered look but you don't want Auntie Jean sitting on a chair with spokes dangerously poking out! You also need to know what furniture they have available for the ceremony, wedding breakfast and party. Will you need to hire in tables and chairs for this purpose and if so do they have adequate storage space for them for when the space needs be turned around ready for the party? Many venues like this won't provide a dedicated wedding co-ordinator so if you're going it alone it could be worth speaking to wedding planners familiar with your chosen venue. Like us here at Pocketful of Dreams, they will often provide an on-the-day service to manage all the set-up and breakdown needed for you and it really can be invaluable when using a space like this.
- If you are bringing in your own caterers either choose ones who are familiar with the venue or those you know will do the necessary groundwork to advise you if it's fit for purpose.
- The other issue with warehouses is that the bathroom amenities may not always be top notch or able to cope with a large number of guests, again something to discuss with the venue itself and add to your checklist.
- And of course this one applies to any venue: always, always, always visit the space yourself. Have a good walk around every area, take photographs to refer back to and even visit at different times of the day to get a feel for how the light and the mood changes. You particularly want to know what it will be like at key times like the ceremony, beginning of dinner and the evening party.
Our Dalston Heights bride needs a look that is understated yet edgy – no fills and fuss here, focus on simple lines for a sleek look. The perfect dress for this venue has to be The Elsie by Pocketful of Dreams firm favourite, Belle and Bunty. With a floaty silk georgette skirt and relaxed cowl neckline, The Elsie Dress exudes understated elegance. Its flowing lines and subtle panelled skirt create a gorgeously flattering silhouette and we love the sculptural neckline.
Add a cool edginess to this look through your make up and accessories. Fancy something a little more of-the-moment for your nails than a French manicure? Go for all white, a big trend right now in the fashion world and the perfect look for our warehouse backdrop. Go for a squared nail in a thick block shade and pair with neutral eyes and a strong orange lip.
Sweep your hair up and choose statement accessories with strong shapes for the perfect contrast with our floaty gown. The Kalista headband from Midlands based luxury headwear designer, Natasha Jane is handmade with Swarovski crystals, glass draped beading and metal studding. Studding, I tell you! The result is a striking, textural look whilst the glass draping keeps it just the right side of feminine. Pair it with strong jewellery pieces like this stunning necklace from Moxham showcasing strong geometric shapes in a white leather.
Dress your groom in a rich brown suit (hat optional!) for an alternative look and add a sophisticated dash of colour to his appearance with a rich orange pocket square. We found the perfect one by Turnbull & Asser at Mr Porter. And mix and match your maids in a range of short, warm orange dresses in distinctive styles. We found a simple yet stylish Michael Kors dress on Farfetch or why not consider this silk beaded shift dress from Jigsaw with a subtle geometric design? Pair the dresses with statement wedges for an effortless, standout style to perfectly complement your bridal look.
Image Credits: 1. Dalston Heights 2. Martha Stewart Weddings 3. Elizabeth Anne Designs 4. Ornamental Tree Hire 5. Felix Gonzalez-Torres 6. Bash, Please 7. Cult Furniture 8. Vintage Marquee Lighting 9. Style Me Pretty 10. Juliet McKee 11. Mint Sprinkles 12. Yeah Rentals
STYLING TIPS FOR A WAREHOUSE WEDDING
- You can choose to play up the industrial vibe with pared back luxe details, metallic elements and plenty of upcycling or go for a complete contrast to the space itself with a really soft and romantic aesthetic to provide the perfect juxtaposition to the roughed up setting.
- Some warehouse venues – including Dalston Heights - come with unusual artifacts, salvaged furniture and props to make use of which is a great bonus and will add plenty of charming interest, giving you a real head-start in terms of styling the space but also ensuring your budget works doubly hard for you
- Warehouses are an expansive space to fill so you need to be creative with your decor choosing larger pieces that will have a high impact – smaller details are likely get a little lost. Think supersized in your decor from your floral arrangements to your decor installations, elements like a wall of festoon lighting or even a lightbulb canopy hanging overhead would work perfectly and stop the space feeling too cavernous.
- Many industrial or warehouse buildings, particularly urban ones, often lack any real outdoor space which the country house manor venues have in abundance. But it doesn't mean you have to go without completely; create a natural look by bringing the outdoors in. Huge trees, plants and foliage can help to soften the space, adding warmth and depth to make it feel more inviting. Try Ornamental Tree Hire for a range of trees and shrubs to dress your space.
- Rows of banquet tables offer diners intimacy and the chance to really get to know one another. Add funky chairs such as these tolix style chairs from Cult Furniture – who also now do furniture hire – and creative details like these marquee light table numbers we found on Etsy.
- Keep your centrepieces elegant and refined in simple gold vessels in muted shades of orange, yellow and creams. Low level arrangements work best for refectory style dining and choose delicate paper goods which echo your floral detailing. We want to create a look that has a cool edginess but still retains a warm and welcoming vibe.
- Such a cool venue deserves something a bit special when it comes to the feasting side of the day. Opt for exciting flavour combinations and pay particular attention to creative presentation of your food. Kalm Kitchen is a real leader in this field, presenting delicious bites in innovative and fun ways that your guests will enjoy almost as much as the taste.
- Serve your favourite tipples as signature cocktails and make them truly personal with a custom name, personalised drink stirrers or how about serving fruit garnishes carved into your initials for a fun and quirky twist?
- Blank canvas venues like warehouses give you the opportunity to really carve up the space as you want, without the restrictions you might find in other venues. Create cosy lounge areas to give a sense of different zones to the space and ensure your guests are comfortable and relaxed at all times. Where possible, make use of any furniture already at the venue; you can always bring in coloured cushions and throws to add your own sense of style to proceedings.
Our Eclectic Cool design was designed specifically with Dalston Heights in mind but would work for any couple getting married in a warehouse or industrial venue. It really is the perfect choice for a bold couple with big ideas about how to style their venue space. So if you love this look and are yet to pick a venue, then make sure you check out these other warehouse venues across the UK:
The North: The Chimney House in Sheffield is a true industrial gem featuring a 93ft chimney, fireplaces, exposed brick work and beams which would perfectly suit our Eclectic Cool look.
The Midlands: The Bond Company in Birmingham comprises a unique group of Victorian buildings centred around The Icehouse, a 19th century warehouse. Less of a true blank canvas than some other warehouse spaces, this venue can cater for smaller parties and offers couples a stunning canalside location.
The South: London is a veritable hotspot for warehouses, especially to the East of the city. We especially love Oval Space which has a cool outdoor terrace set against a gritty gasworks backdrop and MC Motors, brimming with great props.
If you've fallen for the idea of a warehouse wedding, then make sure you pop by our Eclectic Cool: Warehouse Weddings Pinterest board for even more inspiration.
Do let us know what you think in the comments box below and if you'd like us to design a concept for your venue or there are any colours, concepts or ideas that you'd like to see us incorporate into an upcoming inspiration board we'd love to hear from you!
Michelle & Vicki xx
Creative Event Designers at Pocketful of Dreams