A country chic wedding in Italy

 
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Last year I met Sarah and Martin when they decided to celebrate their wedding In Italy. They fell in love with Relais Corte Guastalla, a beautiful  16th century Italian country house, located just a short distance from stunning  Lake Garda and romantic Verona . They decided to organize their party here and they chose an intimate, charming country church for the ceremony.

ph @Mario Casati

ph @Mario Casati

ph @Mario Casati

ph @Mario Casati

ph @Mario Casati

ph @Mario Casati

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ph @Mario Casati

ph @Mario Casati

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ph @Mario Casati

ph @Mario Casati

ph @Mario Casati

The floral backdrop was a mix of romantic and country chic.  White, green and peach were use as the colour scheme for the  event.

ph @Mario Casati

ph @Mario Casati

ph @Mario Casati

ph @Mario Casati

ph @ Mario Casati

ph @ Mario Casati

ph @Mario Casati

ph @Mario Casati

ph @Mario Casati

ph @Mario Casati

ph @Mario Casati

ph @Mario Casati

ph @Mario Casati

ph @Mario Casati

Sarah was passionate about white peony so I used this as the main flower together with an array  of graceful and rustic flowers.

ph @Mario Casati

ph @Mario Casati

ph @Mario Casati

ph @Mario Casati

ph @ Mario Casati

ph @ Mario Casati

ph @ Mario Casati

ph @ Mario Casati

@ Mario Casati

@ Mario Casati

A big thank you to Cristiana a very efficient wedding planner who coordinated the whole day magnificently.

Mario Casati captured the joyful, romantic and effervescent atmosphere perfectly.

ph @ Mario Casati

ph @ Mario Casati

ph @Mario Casati

ph @Mario Casati

ph @Mario Casati

ph @Mario Casati

ph @Mario Casati

ph @Mario Casati

ph @ Mario Casati

ph @ Mario Casati

ph @Mario Casati

ph @Mario Casati

 

4 essential tips for an impeccable table

 
Ph @Paolo Castagnedi

Ph @Paolo Castagnedi

 
 

In October I organized a one day floral workshop focused on how to decorate a table from start to finish. I asked Manuela Piccoli an expert interior designer, to join us and to  give inspirational insights on table etiquette.

During the preparation of the course I kept in mind 4 key points :

  • Style

  • Palette and flowers

  • table preparation

  • less is more

Style

First of all I chose the style. I went for a very romantic, elegant and baroque look. While I was looking for inspiration  I discovered that  next year one trend in wedding decorations will be  “New baroque”. I’m curious to see how the baroque style will evolve this time around. Baroque style always includes ornate gold, extravagant locations and luxurious decorations; how interpret it is completely up to you.

Palette and flowers

I always choose the style and colours at the same time. It’s so important to have a clear idea of the palette from the start. For this event I went for opulent shades of burgundy paired with bright pearl-ivory and gentle gold/caramel tones.  The selective use of colour gave me the freedom to choose the best flowers and greenery. Thanks to the different shapes and petals, I could express the uniqueness and elegance of baroque.

Among the flowers chosen there were:

  • “Antik caramel” garden roses for their sumptuous candy caramel shade

  • Yves Piaget “Ivory” garden roses with their ethereal petals reminiscent of  Japanese silk paper.

  • “Dark chocolate” dahlia with its velvety opulent dark chocolate hue

  • Intense burgundy and light cappuccino carnations

  • Translucent pearl leaves of  Lunaria

  • The beautiful long lithe shape of Stock and Cat’s tail

Ph @Paolo Castagendi

Ph @Paolo Castagendi

Ph @Paolo Castagendi

Ph @Paolo Castagendi

Ph @Paolo Castagnedi

Ph @Paolo Castagnedi

ph @Paolo Castagnedi

ph @Paolo Castagnedi

Ph @Paolo Castagendi

Ph @Paolo Castagendi

 Table setting

After deciding on the style, colour mood and flowers  I met Manuela in her atelier to select all the necessary items. Keeping the style and colours in mind we chose  elegant and timeless white. We picked out old linen table cloths,  fine white bone china dishes decorated in gold, French cutlery and antique crystal glasses.

Ph @Paolo Castagendi

Ph @Paolo Castagendi

Ph @Paolo Castagnedi

Ph @Paolo Castagnedi

Ph @Paolo Castagendi

Ph @Paolo Castagendi

Less is more

When I’m decorating I never forget this golden rule. For this event it meant not adding  any more colours to the ones we already had. Manuela and I immediately agreed that the best and only choice was white for everything.

Ph @Paolo Castegnedi

Ph @Paolo Castegnedi

Ph @Paolo Castagnedi

Ph @Paolo Castagnedi

Ph @Paolo Castagnedi

Ph @Paolo Castagnedi

To wrap up:

  • Don’t forget to use candles

  • Find objects in yours cupboards and use them in an unsual way

  • Don’t forget to decorate the rest of your home or location with a detail inspired by your table design: a colour, a flower or …

  • And don’t forget to enjoy yourself!

Ph @Paolo Castagendi

Ph @Paolo Castagendi

Ph @Paolo Castagnedi

Ph @Paolo Castagnedi

Ph @Paolo Castagnedi

Ph @Paolo Castagnedi

A big thanks to Orietta for having us in her beautiful relais and to Paolo for the incredible photos.

Ph @Paolo Castagnedi

Ph @Paolo Castagnedi

 

A medieval castle shoot

 
Photo @ Valentina Fraccaroli

Photo @ Valentina Fraccaroli

 
 

At the end of winter, just before the approach of spring I was invited to do a shoo in a medieval castle.

When I received the moodboard about this shoot I started by choosing the  colour.

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Burgundy was my immediate choice for its elegance, timeless style and versatility. This shade always gives a deep and dramatic note to each creation.

Starting with the bridal bouquet, I paired  the burgundy to different shades of pink in order to highlight the romantic style of the bridal gown.

Photo @ Valentina Fraccaroli

Photo @ Valentina Fraccaroli

I wanted to create a luxurious and opulent bouquet where  different textures, petal shapes and flowers would add an ethereal and flowing style.

Photo @ Valentina Fraccaroli

Photo @ Valentina Fraccaroli

Photo @ Valetina Fraccaroli

Photo @ Valetina Fraccaroli

For the table decoration I picked flowers with amazing tones of burgundy: ranunculus, spellbinding anemones and dramatic tulips. To give a sparkling light I added  some peach tone flowers. Antique candleholders and small vases with candles added  a magical touch to the whole evening.

Photo @ Valentina Fraccaroli

Photo @ Valentina Fraccaroli

Photo @ Valentina Fraccaroli

Photo @ Valentina Fraccaroli

Photo @Valentina Fraccaroli

Photo @Valentina Fraccaroli

Photo @Valentina Fraccaroli

Photo @Valentina Fraccaroli

Photo @Valentina Fraccaroli

Photo @Valentina Fraccaroli

Photo @ Valentina Fraccaroli

Photo @ Valentina Fraccaroli

Many thanks to an incredible team

Photo / Valentina Fraccaroli
Video / Forever Film di Paolo Brentegani
Drone / Andrea Bianco
Stationery / Bee in Love – Wedding Design di Elisa Tedesco
Mua & Hair / L’officina del MakeUp di Claudia Jclo Make Up
Wedding Cake / Cremerie
Dress / Marianna Michelon
Suit / Baratto Lavis
Shoes / Anniel
Rings / MIOeTUO
Venue / Ai Conti – Break, fast & slow
Patrocinio / Wedding in Arco
Bride / Caterina Brazzoli
Groom / Fabio Porta

 

6 floral installations at the Milan design week

 
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Every April Milan opens its doors to the design week and events of “Fuorisalone”.

For me the Fuorisalone has became an absolute must. In this edition two elements that immediately caught my attention were: flowers and the combination between modern and antique.

As soon as I arrived I went straight  to see the Danish brand “Hay” which was hosted at Palazzo Clerici. The Nordic style was perfectly integrated in the magnificent neoclassical rooms decorated with marble and golden stuccos. The floral arrangements added a cosy atmosphere to the grandeur of the palace.

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Moving on I stopped at the baroque Palazzo Litta, that held the installation  “Temple in the forest” designed by the London studio of Asif Kahn.

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Next I was taken by surprise by the pop up store that Raw had created especially for the Fuorisalone. The new collection of floral fabric born from the collaboration of the amercan brand John Derian and the English  Designer Guild, had a very romantic feel.  Intense pink flowers styled by “Flo” were surrounded by candles to set the scene.

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Arriving in Piazza Duomo I went to see Tiffany’s shop windows. For this occasion Tiffany had asked 5 artists to create a special installation in a silver greenhouse. When I stepped inside I was immediately enchanted by a spectacular curtain of flowers displayed before me.

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In the afternoon there were 2 palaces to visit.

In Palazzo Serbelloni’s courtyard there was the “Swarosky palace”. Upon entering I marveled at the effect of the glittering dancing lights everywhere.

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On the first floor of Palazzo Serbelloni I was blown away by the incredible and stunning floral arrangements created by Christian Tortu for  the Danish brand Gubi. The choice of colours, flowers and natural elements from the vegetable world were perfectly matched with the awesome rooms and furniture.

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To end this amazing day I visited the installation created for Louis Vitton at Palazzo Bocconi. Just inside the courtyard was the incredible Hexacube House “Bubble house” designed by the Greek designer Goerge Candilllis in 1970. Stepping inside the palace, at the top of a majestic staircase I was welcomed by a cascade of 10.000 paper flowers.

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Did you have any chance to visit the Fuori salone? Let me know what surprised you most!

 

4 reasons to choose carnations

 
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Today I would like to write about carnation, a flower that is very often underestimated without being able to stand up for itself. These opinions come from the past when the floral arrangements were very basic or because here in Italy the custom is to use them on sad occasions.

But I think the time has arrived to open up the doors to this special flower which has a lot to offer.  Let me give you at least 4 reasons to change your mind about carnations

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First of all nowadays there is an incredible variety of colours which always leave me speechless. Since the start of my career I’ve discovered numerous carnation varieties.

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The second reason is that carnations keep you company for quite a long time, nearly a week or more. A tip they don’t like much water in the vase and the stems are quite fragile.

Thirdly carnations can be found throughout the year and they are fairly cheap. For these reasons they are ideal to complement any floral arrangements.

Ph Paolo Castagnedi

Ph Paolo Castagnedi

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And finally they have a wonderful delicate scent and are very soft to touch. A bunch of white carnations  looks like whipped cream. Their consistency and the movement of the petals remind me of sumptuous velvet.

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Don’t forget that in flower language they mean pure love.

Ph Paolo Castagnedi

Ph Paolo Castagnedi

Have you ever thought about giving them or  decorating  your home with them?

 
 

YOUR ITALIAN COUNTRY CHIC PICNIC WEDDING

 
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Searching for an idea for an original and stylish wedding? A picnic wedding could be just the thing!

Imagine a beautiful 16th century Italian country house, Relais Corte Guastalla, surrounded by Custoza vineyards, just a short distance from stunning Lake Garda and romantic Verona, the city of Romeo and Juliet and eternal love.

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

An exclusive picnic wedding in the shade of majestic trees, amidst bouquets of peonies, roses, lisianthius and many other hand-selected spectacular flowers. Only the finest china, crystal and original French silverware will be used to make your special day absolutely perfect!

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

Our team of highly qualified professionals will help you create your unique picnic wedding with an unforgettable magical atmosphere in a stylish setting.

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

A typical picnic wedding package for 25 people includes:

•    3 nights accommodation including international breakfast at Relais Corte Guastalla in a double or triple room

•    Exclusive use of Relais Corte Guastalla location for 3 days

•    Wedding Photography service  by Marco Bravi

•    Floral design and decorations by Tania Muser

•    Wedding Planner: Cristiana Sarego of My Perfect Day

•    Place settings by Manuela Piccoli

•    Food and drinks for the picnic

We create made-to-measure packages according to your special requests.

Get in touch with us!

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@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

 
 

A peak behind the scenes of a country chic picnic

 
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A country chic picnic is  an unusual way  to celebrate  your wedding reception, a birthday or a bridal shower. I’d been thinking about this ideas for quite a long time. Then when I met Orietta at Relais Corte Guastalla I knew that I’d found the perfect  location. So a couple of days later  I decided to organize an inspirational picnic shoot with: Orietta, Cristiana, Manuela an Marco.

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

Let me introduce you to this wonderful team:

Orietta and her husband who welcomed us in their fabulous park and villa.

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

Manuela Piccoli a romantic interior designer who’s passionate about shabby chic! She spends most of her time at antique markets in France searching for unique pieces. She turned the park into a magical setting with wrought iron lanterns, floral patterned armchairs and soft mauve velvet cushions. She laid out a white linen tablecloth on the grass with floral bone china dishes, French silver cutlery and crystal glasses.

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

Marco Bravi and his son always manage to capture incredible emotional moments.

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

Cristiana, a very capable wedding planner coordinated the whole day magnificently.

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

My job was to organize the flowers. In keeping with the country theme I chose delicate wild flowers paired with luxurious peonies, elegant roses together with olive, rosemary and seasonal greenery.

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

The mood was: fresh and sparkling, romantic and elegant with a retro feel about it.

These were some of the behind the scenes moments.

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

Check my blog tomorrow for the picnic package details.

@ Marco Bravi

@ Marco Bravi

Thanks to Gaiadi for the stationary!

 
 

Intensive floral workshop with an autumn twist

 
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There was a unique vibe during my last intensive floral work-shop in October.

The special ingredients that made these two days so incredible were: an amazing group of curious and focused women: Natascia, Alessia, Nadia, Giorgia, Caterina, Silvia and Elena. Each one with her own dreams, passions, but above all very determined to share this experience.

The wonderfully welcoming Relais Corte Guastalla location set amongst the Custoza vineyard was the perfect backdrop for our week-end.

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I chose the vibrant autumn palette of : the bordeaux chrysanthemum, the chocolate of the Cosmos, the ruby red of the hydrangea  and the more delicate tones of pastel pink of the perfumed O’Hara roses.

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At the beginning of the course I gave a small  floral patterned notebook to each partecipant. Here they could note down any tips that they’d picked up during the week-end.

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This was my fourth  intensive floral workshop and I must say it was a really magical experience for us all.  Here are some special words from Natascia from Parma:”Wood of Ceylon, powerful, crisp, exciting, magical, special  and unique. This was how Tania welcomed us on the  first morning. The morning light shimmering through the windows of the villa, candles flickering, a folded apron on the table, and a unique patterned  notebook. A small branch of red apples laid out to remind us that nature is a work of art, and all our flowers displayed magnificently on the mantelpiece.

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A special thanks to Elena, who captured those two days beautifully with her camera.

 

An autumn wedding with an essential flower

 
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Hi again, hope you had a good summer I’d a splendid one. As the leaves are starting to fall I thought I’d tell you about a wonderful autumn wedding I did last year.

Paula and Adam are a lovely couple who live in London and wanted to celebrate their union in Northern Italy. They chose the romantic location of Valpolicella amidst the vineyards.

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Paula had a very clear idea of the style, the hues and the atmosphere that she wanted for their wedding. Being passionate about flowers herself it was important that they played an important role on their special day.

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Constance Spry the English floral designer was a source of inspiration for Paula. This innovative floral designer was behind the creation for Elizabeth II’s coronation and many other royal events. She was a very strong, independent woman, passionate about flowers who brought flowers to the masses. Nowadays her elegant and natural style is very much in vogue and she wrote many books about floral design.

Going back to Paula’s wedding she chose a palette made up of different shades of bordeaux, burgundy, green and cream. A touch of light peach was added to give light and to create and edgy contrast. The chocolate hue of her moodboard conveyed elegance, smoothness and consistency.

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For the flowers we chose:

  • Dahlia "dark chocolate", a flower with a dramatic red-chocolate colour;
  • Dahlia “cafè au Lait” which I love deeply and its sole presence brightens up every floral arrangement;
  • Cosmos an ethereal flower with a bold almost black hue and velvet petals (check out my link);
  • Stonecrop and Amnivisnaga, the first is fleshy and the second has a vintage lace look;
  • Berries of black and red Viburnun, pink Symphoricarpos, peach St. John’s Wort and branches of small green rosehips;
  • Foliage of different shades together with the unique burgundy violet Cotinus.

And last but not least black grapes and pomegranates were placed on each table for good luck.

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Paula’s gown  was simple in style and light golding colour, a perfect background for her beautiful, big bridal bouquet. The curvaceous branches of green rosehip and cosmos gave a lightness and flow to it.

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As you can see from the photos the final result was stunning"!

Take a look for yourself and let me know what you think.

PH: Dave Watts

Some photos are from Pinterest and some are mine.