SHHHH. It’s a Surprise!!

A few weeks back we told you about the adorable couple that we got a call from…to plan their surprise wedding. That’s right…Rachel & Dustin got engaged…and wanted to get married in 3 months…but don’t tell anyone.
We seriously could not have had more fun planning this if we tried. First off – Rachel gave us the best summer palette EVER to work with: kelly green, tangerine orange, shades of grey, fuchsia and we threw in some red. ah.mazing.


This bridal bouquet was by Annie at Sag Harbor Florist…we love working with her!
We wanted the decor to be bright, fun, spontaneous…just like this event. We LOVE using bold colors and with the light in this incredible venue, Rayuela, Raquel got the most beautiful shots!


As always we personalized the decor around the venue for our soon to be married couple with tons of pictures in colorful frames. They gave us some great pictures of the two of them to work with…and some even included shots from their engagement shoot

We designed menus for the bars around the venue since we got to offer a few fabulous signature drinks and put them in frames that we had spray painted gold.


After getting to know Rachel & Dustin while planning this event we knew that they were a couple who would appreciate all of the attention to detail that we put into our events…so we continued onward with more! There is a fad going on with paper straws and we’re all over it. For so many of our parties we use the stripe-y straws to spice things up but for Rachel & Dustin we saw “branchy” straws instead. Rustic, understated, chic…just like this affair. And we added R(heart)D flags to the straws that we placed on the bar on the main floor…and flags that said surprise! to the bar upstairs where drinks were served following the secret nuptials…

This venue could not have set up more perfectly for the big surprise. The guests gathered on the main floor and were later ushered upstairs where the surprise ceremony was going to take place…

We set the timeline for Rachel & Dustin to allow for photos to be taken before their guests arrived. We were so happy to bring Raquel Langworthy of Raquel Bianca Creative on board for this wedding and Raquel spent a bunch of time with the two of them taking shots on the terrace, around the venue and with their family members – who were the only people that knew what was going to happen at this so called “engagement party”…

By far one of the coolest things about Rayuela which our amazing venue scout, Laurie found for Rachel & Dustin to have this event at…was the tree that was stuck right in the middle of the place. SO cool!  And so great for adding decor!


We worked with Confetti System, one of our favorite NYC Vendors to hang these chic pinatas in the center of the venue from this insanely awesome tree! We also got a few tissue tassel garlands to hang around the venue which really popped and looked beautiful hanging all over the space upstairs!

So the guests arrived, mingled, had drinks and noshed on passed appetizers…


And after one hour we got them all upstairs…while Rachel & Dustin went down to the basement of this venue to change into their wedding outfits.


While the guests were hanging out and continuing to enjoy themselves, having no idea what was about to go down…Rachel & Dustin were having their first look outside of the staff locker room…

And then enjoying a few minutes before they surprised their guests by tying the knot…

This is when we ran a slideshow. We had a huge screen set up right in front of the terrace and got everyone to turn their attention to it. We compiled pictures from Rachel & Dustin’s relationship and created a short montage…which was interrupted by a video that they filmed and my friends over at Vapor Music edited for me. The video was of them telling their guests that they were about to GET MARRIED! I’m sure you can imagine the reactions at this point…it was priceless!

Rachel & Dustin invited four of their special guests to come and hold the chuppah poles during their video and our team got them all in place within a few minutes just in time for the ceremony to begin. Our DJ spun Marry You by Bruno Mars and following the Rabbi, Dustin came walking up with his parents…..followed by his proud wife to be: Rachel and her mom.


There were very few dry eyes in the house. The shock of it all followed by a beautiful ceremony on the terrace on a perfect August night was enough to melt anyone’s heart.


Rachel and Dustin incorporated all of the Jewish traditions in their ceremony that were most important to them…


Followed by a small gathering of friends back downstairs to sign the Ketubah which we planned to do after the ceremony in this non-traditional wedding…

Following the first dance as husband & wife, blessing over the challah and a hora, the newlyweds cut their cake. One of my favorite parts of this party…was this cake. Oh lord…it was GORGEOUS!  Based on the color palette and mood board that we had put together for Rachel & Dustin, we worked with the Butterfly Bakeshop to design this masterpiece…

They did a fabulous job executing this cake and it tasted amazing!

The rest of the night consisted of a lot of dancing, good food and tons of fun celebrating Rachel & Dustin’s big surprise!


Last but not least…Rachel and Dustin wanted to thank their guests for being at the party by sending them home with a little something. We were so excited to FINALLY get the chance to work with the gang at Mine Design. We met these gals at the gift show a couple years back and have been dying to work with them ever since. Rachel & Dustin have a great love for travel so we used this as our theme for a favor and sent their guests home with travel chalkboard candle tins. They are compact enough to pack in your suitcase or just keep with you on your nightstand at home. And you can write notes on the chalkboard tops…so adorable and definitely practical! And to top it all off we surprised Rachel and Dustin with a personalized sign for their favor table including the “surprise” bunting shot of them from the engagement shoot that they did with Raquel…


And of course we personalized the favors with hangtags…you wouldn’t expect anything less from us, now would you?!


What an unbelievable event this was. One we will never forget. We not only had an incredible time putting this together…but we also walked away with a couple of new friends…which is always a bonus in this biz. Thank you Rachel & Dustin for allowing us to be a part of this special party…we wish you a life full of good health, love and happiness!  And a big CHEERS to many more finger biting bashes…!!