Garden-inspired wedding reception: There’s no place like home

There was no wedding venue more ideal for Casey and Harry’s “midsummer night’s dream” wedding than the bride's regal family home and gardens in Rumson, NJ. The lush gardens were the inspiration and the backdrop for the entire event, lending to the wedding’s blush, ivory and green color palette with black and white accents and countless floral arrangements filling every empty space. The couple had envisioned a tented environment that melded dramatic visual elements with the colors, shapes and forms of the surrounding landscape. Allison Sargent Events helped ensure that their ideas truly came to life. 

Following a traditional Catholic ceremony, the couple rode in a vintage Rolls Royce to the family home while guests rode on a trolley. Upon their arrival, they walked down a long driveway lined with illuminating lanterns and were met with signature drinks served on silver platters as they headed to the cocktail hour. 

The use of tents can create elegant spaces by way of brilliant colors, fabrics, lighting, draping, floral design and dramatic design elements — and this wedding achieved a beautiful transformation. Guests entered the cocktail tent through an elaborately designed black-and-white striped cabana. The cocktail tent’s interior was highlighted by a circular custom drum shade with black and white stripes hung from the draped ceiling. Custom fabrics, which featured a Greek key cornice to mirror the architectural details of the home, appointed the interior of the tent. Black and white design elements were also incorporated into the table linens and tabletop design, as well as a black-and-white striped chandelier. 

The couple wanted to welcome the garden inside by leaving the sides of the tent open and cutting out a hole in the floor for one of the trees to come through to the middle of their soiree. It was the perfect background for enjoying cocktails and hors d’oeuvres and setting the mood for a reception they won’t soon forget.

The entrance to the reception tent ushered in guests with ornate blush and green monogrammed linens, monogrammed lime green runners, crystal chandeliers, rose petal lamps and more trees peeking up through the ground. Gold stitching masterfully draped across the entire ceiling. The process of creating the whimsical atmosphere required days to complete, as skilled craftspeople transformed the space to bring a “midsummer night’s dream” to life. The décor and the lighting accentuated the magic of the evening.

Casey and Harry treated their guests to an exceptional culinary feast catered by master Chef Max Hansen. The bride’s aunt (and owner of Flaky Tart) made a decadent three-tier buttercream carrot cake decorated with buttercream flowers for dessert.

At the end of the night, guests returned to the cocktail tent, which had been transformed with a custom-built dance floor and the use of dramatic lighting. Between the music and dancing and the colorful desserts, the party continued in celebration of the happy couple.

As the night eventually drew to a close, guests were led to the valet by moss-covered English lanterns. And as they drove away, they could admire the spectacular silhouette of the estate, as each tree was dramatically lit against the sky and full moon.

Every element of this extravagant, ultra-chic wedding was carefully thought out, planned and executed to make this couple’s vision a dream come true.