January’s Diary of a Wedding Planner: Holiday Celebrations, The Ritz, Decca77, Intercontinental and more…..

 Wine with a Wedding Planner, Montreal Wedding Planner, Wedding Planner Montreal, Montreal Wedding Planning, An English Rose, Rachel Cripps-Gervais, Eastern Townships Wedding Planner, Eastern Townships Weddings, Wedding Planner Eastern Townships, Montreal Weddings, Montreal Wedding Day Coordinator, Montreal Destination Wedding, Montreal Same Sex Weddings, Coombe LodgeWell well, I can’t believe Christmas came and went and we are now in the crazy season of booking some amazing new weddings!

I know it’s late but Happy New Year anyway and hope the year has started well for you all…. sadly I came down with the “Quebec” flu on the 30th December and it really knocked me out for a good 3 weeks before I was back to normal… but luckily it was not the Christmas week as we had friends fly in from the UK and what fun we had for the week.  We firstly had a great time in Montreal with a visit to the Christmas Market at Place des Arts and sampled some of the local products and the Hot Wine.. well it was 5.00 o’clock somewhere in the world!  Secondly, my daughter Sasha who was out in South Africa visiting her boyfriend for what I thought was through until March, surprised me (with the help of Chris) by coming home for the holidays, which was the absolute best Christmas present a mother could get 🙂

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Christmas celebrations started on Christmas eve with a bit of a party (and a little too much alcohol) and then a lot of singing and dancing in our new Butler & Rose Tavern 🙂  Our friends Sylvian and Jonathan stopped by, who are actually previous clients of mine and now great friends, but they were sensible and left before the renditions of “Les Miserable” happened!  Christmas Day was a lot of fun too with Chris’s son and wife and our very cute grandson Kai and then on Boxing Day we took the Brits “Ice Fishing” near Trois Riviere which was not as boring as I thought it was going to be LOL…. and the fact that we had heat and could BYOW it was most enjoyable – we also caught about 30 + Tom Cod!

And what is a trip to Quebec without going up to Quebec City… just outside Quebec City we went Husky Dog Sledding and the next day we took them to Montmorency Falls and a quick visit of the City as sadly a storm was heading in so we had to get back to the Townships, where we finished with “Smoked Meat Spaghetti” at our favourite Smoked Meat restaurant in Magog “B&G”! –  it was truly a fantastic break reconnecting with loved ones!

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Since then it has been all go go go meeting with some great new clients and working on finalising details for this spring / summer weddings.  I must admit in terms of planning I love this time of year when all the new weddings come in and you learn all about their ideas and visions of what they want their dream day to be and my mind starts swirling with which venue’s might be amazing for their wedding… it’s only when the venue is booked that the visioning really starts!

As this time of year is a little quieter is is also a great time for me to get out and about meeting up with venue’s, attend events and meeting great new vendors and the last two weeks I have certainly been doing this!

I recently had lunch with Donna at The Ritz, we’ve done a couple of weddings there recently so it was nice to relax and catch up and of course the food was excellent… of course everyone knows the Ritz and how beautiful it is for weddings in their Oval Ballroom, but they also have a suite of smaller rooms perfect for more intimate weddings, showers and rehearsal dinners!

I also met up with Voula from Decca 77 and of course this restaurant is very well known for their food, but what I didn’t realise is that they also have exclusive access to an amazing atrium area in the office building behind them for weddings & ceremonies surrounded by floor to ceiling windows in the heart of Montreal… again I don’t want to give too much away now as I will also be blogging about this space next month.  We had a lovely lunch and the food presentation and flavours were just incredible…. just as well as they have 3 chefs from Toqué who run the kitchen and if you didn’t know Decca 77 also own L’Atellier d’Argentine in Old Montreal and on Crescent street… another interesting location for a smaller wedding with a NY loft feel!

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Then last Thursday was the launch party for the new banquet space at the Intercontinental Montreal on floors 5 & 6 of the amazing Nordheimer building, it was a fun night with sumptuous food and I wont’ go into too much detail now – but check out my “Butler & Rose” blog on Monday and I’ll give you all the details of the new space with an outdoor terrace area overlooking Old Montreal!!

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Well this weekend is my hubby’s birthday so we are off to one of the top spots in Eastern Townships “Hovey Manor” for dinner, plus a few other surprises in store for him which I cannot say for now LOL as I know he reads my blogs :O)

As the new year has come and time is on our side…. here is a look at a great “Clock” Themed wedding…. enjoy!!

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Created by Carly Gunther, An English Rose

Cheers

Wedding Planner, Wedding Planning

 

December’s Diary of a Wedding Planner: The “Butler & Rose Taverne”, Final Weddings & Holiday Wishes

Wine with a Wedding Planner, Montreal Wedding Planner, Wedding Planner Montreal, Montreal Wedding Planning, An English Rose, Rachel Cripps-Gervais, Eastern Townships Wedding Planner, Eastern Townships Weddings, Wedding Planner Eastern Townships, Montreal Weddings, Montreal Wedding Day Coordinator, Montreal Destination Wedding, Montreal Same Sex WeddingsWow the past 6 weeks our beautiful log house has been in a constant state of upheaval as we’ve had contractors in working on creating our new “Butler & Rose Taverne” in the basement!!  Chris and I had a dream of designing a “Shakespearean Pub” at our home and the last year we have been researching and coming up with ideas as to how to achieve this – and now it has come reality and I am so excited.  The floor is covered is old slate grey tiles while the ‘crumbling’ walls created a look of old brick showing through dating back to 1700’s.  With log beams archways through to the ‘bar’ and a Tudor ceiling, I must admit it looks incredible!!  The back bar we created old “London Brick” wall… with red long bricks, back in the 1700’s they were at least 9.5 inches long.. now a days bricks are much shorter.  I also scouted our favourite antique shop on St-Laurent Blvd for old church doors and handles etc. to add to the final look!  Our fireplace is amazing with floor to ceiling old grey stonework and a beautiful 100 year old log beam for the mantle, most men bring their wife’s chocolates or flowers, but I got pieces of wood LOL which I get very excited about!!

For the basement toilet, we also did something quite fun (we do have a sense of humour) and although not quite “Olde English” we created an “Outhouse” for the bathroom, with wood walls, tin ceiling and even a hidden toilet surrounded by old barn wood.  We even found an old basin and pump which we are in the process of turning into a full functional sink!  Even our cat Shadow has his own little ‘outhouse’ of his own too LOL!!

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November was busy with our final 2 weddings of the year…..

Isabel & Andrew had the most beautiful elegant wedding at the Omni Hotel in Montreal’s “Golden Mile Square” and I loved the combinations of Blush Pink, Gold and Navy that was designed for her wedding!  They braved the Fall day with taking their first look pictures and wedding party shots on the streets of Montreal too!

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Ellie & Alexandre had a chilly day at the end of November, but with her faux fur wrap keeping her warm and the huge fireplace at the venue everyone was feeling lovely and warm!

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Now the holidays are upon us and I would like to say a huge thank you to all my clients for hiring An English Rose, with 18 weddings planned / couples married it has been a wonderful year working with you all.  We could not also do this job without all the amazing talent in Montreal, so huge thank you to our wonderful vendors and I am looking forward to another successful year in 2017… our 10th year – gosh where did the time go!!

Take time out this holiday season to relax, eat, drink and be merry and make some lovely new memories!  Here’s our final wedding inspiration board of the year, and with “Copper” being so popular… enjoy our Copper Styled Wedding!

Cheers!!

Wedding Planner, Wedding Planning

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Created by Carly Gunther, An English Rose

October’s Diary of a Wedding Planner: Logistic Meetings, Wedding Day Challenges & Fall Relaxation

Wine with a Wedding Planner, Montreal Wedding Planner, Wedding Planner Montreal, Montreal Wedding Planning, An English Rose, Rachel Cripps-Gervais, Eastern Townships Wedding Planner, Eastern Townships Weddings, Wedding Planner Eastern Townships, Montreal Weddings, Montreal Wedding Day Coordinator, Montreal Destination Wedding, Montreal Same Sex Weddings, Fall, Thanksgiving, New HampshireOctober is a beautiful month, the turning of the trees, the rich colours, and I was going to say a chill in the air, but the first couple of weeks it was gorgeous weather!!  I’ve been busy with finalising details for my October & November weddings as well as taking some time out to spend time with my mother who has been visiting from the UK and also family from St-Louis who came up to visit us for Thanksgiving, so as always it has been a busy month!

Wedding Preparation Meetings

This past month I have been putting together the final preparations for two weddings, the first one taking place at the Parisian Laundry in the Atwater area which is a totally empty space so when walking through with a couple it’s so important for them to be able to visualize what there day will look like, which isn’t always easy!  So we do a lot of walking around and drawing out the room layout on paper.  The great thing is that you can be really creative as to where everything will be placed and the flow of the evening.  Initially I felt the tables were too crammed together, so with moving the buffet area into the entrance area we then freed up space for the dinner tables and able to keep the two areas separate!  Then we gave the task of drawing up a new room layout to our rental company in order to share with the set up team on the day!

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Our second wedding which is due to take place mid-November is taking place at the elegant Omni hotel in the heart of the Golden Mile Square… obviously when working with a hotel the logistics are more simple, but we did still have debates over the ceremony aisle as of course there is always a pillar in the wrong place LOL… so I suggested the bride return to the hotel the following Saturday to see the room set up for a ceremony so that she could visually see what the room would look like and how they were setting up the aisle – for weddings and couples it is all about the “Visual” look, so don’t be afraid to go as many times as needed to your wedding venue until you are comfortable with how everything will look on your special day!

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Wedding Day Challenges

I must admit 99.9% of the time my weddings are perfect, well I did plan them after all… but on the very rare occasion when information may not have been as forthcoming as I would have liked a curve ball is thrown and we have to think on our feet and be all hands to the deck.  This is what happened at my wedding in October at the Parisian Laundry!

It was a beautiful wedding, but sadly a few details were missing (but you don’t know what you don’t know, literally until it’s too late) and on the day of the wedding the caterer then informed me that they were only there to serve the food from the buffet and that they were not asked to bring any ‘waiters’ for the evening – GULP!!  So we have 150+ guests and no wait staff…. however the room had been set up beautifully and the caterer’s were taking care of the buffet station, it was just a question of clearing dishes.  So guess who became a ‘waiter’ for the evening…. Moi, LOL – not my finest skill set I must admit, but when needs must at the end of the day the most important thing is that the couple have an amazing day and as most of my planning friends know, we do what we do to get it done.

When I did get a moment with the couple they told me that the wedding party had agreed to help with clearing tables etc. which is not ideal and while I understand the need to be careful with a budget, cutting back on your waiters is one area I DO NOT recommend you do….. cut back on other areas, but not people to clean the tables & dishes, especially as these are the people who also need to be placing everything back in the racks ready for the rental company to pick up the next day… and your wedding party are there to enjoy and celebrate your special day with you!

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Wedding Stationary Design

This week we also spent time with the lovely Anita from Creative Expressions to work on some invitation designs for one of our couples who are getting married next April.  As this wedding is for two gentlemen we wanted to ensure it represented their ‘formal’ style of their wedding and chose something in a Black/White theme but with a little twist of fun on the back which will be very unique.  We also talked about “Save The Dates” which will be sent out before the holiday season, but as these do not need to be a reflection of the wedding we had a little fun with these but still incorporated the colours of the wedding into  the design!

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Fall Fun

On a personal level I must admit I have had a lovely October, the colours in the Eastern Townships were just stunning.  As my mother was here we took a couple of days down in New Hampshire driving through the White Mountain area which was stunning.  Plus the weather was beautiful and ‘hot’ if you can believe it so we took in a little shopping!

Earlier this year we also went to the launch party of the Orford Express Train, some of you may not realise but this train sadly caught fire 2 years ago and has been out of service ever since, but this year they are back in business so we booked a “lunch” on the Train for my mother and must admit the food was amazing.  Did you also know that you can reserve the train for parties & small weddings – now that would be fun too!

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Now I know a lot of my emphasis (if you know me well) is about food, and as I mentioned earlier my Aunt & Uncle came up from St-Louis for Thanksgiving and of course I introduced them to “Poutine”…no big deal you say, but as my uncle is a food critic and comes from a family of restaurateurs …. I was holding my breath – good news they gave it a big thumbs up :O)  We also had fun cooking over the weekend together and introducing them to “Moose” Bourginon which went down a treat!

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Well “Halloween” is now upon us this weekend, so stay safe for all of you going out on Monday night or celebrating over the weekend and if you are planning a Halloween themed wedding, here’s

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Created by Carly Gunther of An English Rose

what we put together for you!

Cheers,

Wedding Planner, Wedding Planning

Weddings, Afternoon Tea & A Little Wine Tasting!

Wine with a Wedding Planner, Montreal Wedding Planner, Wedding Planner Montreal, Montreal Wedding Planning, An English Rose, Rachel Cripps-Gervais, Eastern Townships Wedding Planner, Eastern Townships Weddings, Wedding Planner Eastern Townships, Montreal Weddings, Montreal Wedding Day Coordinator, Montreal Destination Wedding, Montreal Same Sex Weddings, Chapelle Ste-Agnes, SuttonGoodness, I know it’s been nearly 2 months since my last personal blog, but I do have an excuse – it’s called planning and taking care of weddings and my family!!  I think I have had about 10 weddings since I last wrote, then my daughter came back a month early from working on the “Norwegian” Cruise Ships so we took a mid-season break to Cuba (more about that in my next blog) and of course being the summer I’ve been busy socialising and getting ‘outdoors’!!  Don’t worry, Chris has been working hard too making lots of things for our new log home!

Birks Afternoon Tea with The Butler

Early this year we took afternoon tea at Birks Cafe, of course I cannot say that is an exact replica of afternoon tea in England, but it was delicious all the same!  We had an amazing array of savoury goodies and of course Scones with Cream & Jam and other little cakes and petit fours.  Now did you know that cream teas originate from Devon & Cornwall in England and of course there is a huge debate over which way you decorate your scone… so firstly of course you cut the scone in the middle – no you do not break it like a piece of bread with your fingers which I have sadly seen!  Then of course no butter, this is a big ‘no no’ and depending on where you come from or your preference you then decorate your scone with ‘Strawberry Jam’ and Cream.  Now here’s the debate, is it jam first and then cream or cream first and then the jam?  Well if you smother in Jam first and then dollop the jam on top (like me) then you are eating them “Cornish Style” and if it is cream first with a dollop of jam on top then you are eating them “Devon Style”!  Cream teas should also be eaten between midday and two in the afternoon in lieu of lunch (especially if you eat two creamed scones)!!

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Montreal Real Life Wedding – Stefanie & Trevor

I started working with Stefanie when she was about 7 or 8 months pregnant and now her beautiful little baby turned one last month and was also a flower girl at her Mummy and Daddy’s wedding!  Stefanie and Trevor wanted a bit of a Hollywood theme, so we went with the Oscar Colours of Red, Back & Gold and as the family was from the West Island they also wanted to have the wedding locally and use local vendors.  They had a great night celebrating at The Sheraton Dorval and I think as you can see her colours certainly came through!

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Wine Tasting at the Chapelle Ste Agnes

I also organised a Wine Tasting evening at the Chapelle Ste Agnes Vineyard located in Sutton which is a stunning space for a wedding, not only will you think you have arrived at a European Castle, but you will wonder at the scenery as it is nestled in a little valley.  Now I have visited on a number of occasions and have also done a small wedding here a few years back, but I bought a group from the Eastern Townships and we had a wonderful tour from John & Karena the owners and a little private tasting.  Did you know that they are known for their ice wines which have won awards all over the world!!!  Also if you are looking for something different to do, you can also volunteer to help pick the grapes for their amazing ice wine, but of course this has to be at -12 so typically around 2.00 am in the early hours of a cold December morning!  But I am sure the atmosphere is great and of course they give you a good slap up breakfast afterwards!

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Montreal Real Life Wedding – Arielle & Ben

Arielle’s father has a place in the Eastern Townships so we looked at a number of venue’s before settling on the beautiful Manoir Rouville-Campbell in Richelieu which is the perfect setting for a weekend wedding!  They had a beautiful ceremony (despite the rain) in a tent overlooking the river and then cocktails on the terrace with lanterns hanging.  Arielle chose soft yellow and silver for her colours and wore two wedding dresses on her special day!!

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In light of the Olympics and the Para-Olympics here’s a little “Rio” themed wedding to enjoy!

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Cheers!!
Wedding Planner, Wedding Planning

 

 

 

Canada Day, White Night, Weddings…. and Kindness!

To be honest it haWine with a Wedding Planner, Montreal Wedding Planner, Wedding Planner Montreal, Montreal Wedding Planning, An English Rose, Rachel Cripps-Gervais, Eastern Townships Wedding Planner, Eastern Townships Weddings, Wedding Planner Eastern Townships, Montreal Weddings, Montreal Wedding Day Coordinator, Montreal Destination Wedding, Montreal Same Sex Weddingss been very difficult to get motivated in writing my blog lately, it started a few weeks back with the pointless death of Jo Cox and “Brexit” which I personally do not want to comment on!!!  And following on with the heartache and tragedies in Orlando, Nice and Turkey I must admit I look around me and am horrified with the human race and the world of hatred that has become us…. whatever happened to “live and let live” and “love thy neighbour”…. life is so so short and shouldn’t we all have the right to live in peace and harmony – why can’t we create a world where our children will be safe and not afraid and diversity is celebrated!!

I must admit I am staring at the screen this morning finding it hard to spring back into normality, but as we all know, life goes on and we cannot stand still…. so here’s what we’ve been up to in our little corner of the world……

Montreal Real Life Wedding – Lia & Johnny

Lia and Johnny had a beautiful “Sparkly” wedding recently and were married at a Greek Orthadox Church and then celebrated afterwards with their 350+ guests at Le Mont Blanc in Laval which always puts on an amazing spread of food including for this couple a “Lobster Tower” and more!!!  I loved Lia’s colour palette especially the glamour of her Bridesmaids in various shades of pinks/golds & silver sequin dresses…. more of this wedding another time!

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Canada Day in Gatineau

This year believe it or not we did not have a wedding on the Canada Day weekend, so we took ourselves off to Lac McGregor in Gatineau to visit with some friends who are living the “Lake Life” to the full!  In true Rachel style I was dressed up in my patriotic “Red & White” right down to my fun nails I decided to paint for the weekend.  We had a great “Cook Out” on the 1st July with a big pot of beans, ribs and potatoes and also celebrated our friend Steve’s special birthday with a “Poutine” birthday cake LOL… now I am wondering what is more healthy.. a Poutine Birthday Cake or a real Poutine… mmm bit like the chicken and the egg I suspect ha ha !!

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Diner a Blanc in Sherbrooke

Last week we had our first experience of “White Night” which takes place believe it or not around the world… I am not quite sure if there is a purpose to these nights apart from having a lot of fun which is exactly what we did… We were invited by our friends in Magog, and of course the theme of the night is “White”, white everything from your clothes you wear, to the linens on the tables, the dishes and even your cooler bags have to be wrapped in white.  We met by buses which took us to a secret location, that’s right…. no-one knows where the event takes place until the night of the party and no social media posting until 8.00 pm!!  Upon arrival at the Marché de la Gare we are giving seating locations, tables and chairs and then the set up begins.

Quite an event I can tell you, everyone has to bring their own food and drinks and the food preparation (including ours) could beat any restaurant I can tell you!  Once everyone is ready, yes about 400 + people an announcement is made and then “Bon Appetit”….. a wonderful meal with great friends in a fun atmosphere of “White”… even a DJ to dance the night away under the stars….

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So leaving you with the sadness with all those that have lost their lives in the last month I am sending you a “Rainbow” wedding theme to remind us to be happy, to love and give kindness around Wine with a Wedding Planner, Montreal Wedding Planner, Wedding Planner Montreal, Montreal Wedding Planning, An English Rose, Rachel Cripps-Gervais, Eastern Townships Wedding Planner, Eastern Townships Weddings, Wedding Planner Eastern Townships, Montreal Weddings, Montreal Wedding Day Coordinator, Montreal Destination Wedding, Montreal Same Sex Weddings, Rainbow Weddingthe world.

Cheers, Rachel xx

 

Betty’s 90th Birthday, and A British Celebration!!

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Our Queen is now the longest reigning monarch and the head of 53 countries of the Commonwealth with a combined population of 2.2 billion, which is nearly a third of the world population and YES I am proud to be British and part of the Commonwealth!

My good friend Deb last weekend turned her home into a “British Pub” decorated with Union Jack bunting, beer mats, dart board a giant Jenga and even a “Pub Quiz” which I have to say I failed miserable, I guess I need to brush up on my Royal’s a bit more!!  We had lots of amazing British Traditional Food for our Pub Night which included Bangers ‘n’ Mash, Chicken Curry, “Hedge Hogs”, Scotch Eggs, Poughmans, Triffle and of course our favourite Summer Drink Pimms!!

For those of you interested in “British Fare”, here are a couple of interesting items of food!

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When I go home this is a must have in my mothers fridge on arrival LOL… apparently they date back to 1738 and were invented by the department store “Fortnum & Mason” but of course just like who invented Poutine, there are numerous claims to fame for Scotch Eggs too!  So basically these are hard boiled eggs, wrapped in sausage meat, coated in breadcrumbs and then deep fried LOL, however when I make them I tend to bake them in the oven to make them a bit healthier!  Best served with some Branston Pickle, which can be found at Clarence & Cripps!

 

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Now these were at every kids party during the 1970’s and probably on every buffet table throughout GB (Great Britain) for any party of any occasion.  These were always fun to make just by taking cubes of cheese and cubes of pineapple and putting them on a cocktail stick and then placing them either in a wrapped half grapefruit or large potato and then making a cute little face on the front!

 

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We didn’t actually have this at the party, but I did make it recently and it must be one of the most easiest desserts to make.  It actually was invented at “Eton” Boys School, which for Canadians you may have heard of… it’s the private school where all the future Kings of England attend including Charles, William, Harry and most probably George will go there too?  It was also founded back in 1440 by King Henry VI….. Anyway this particular dessert dates back only to the 19th century LOL and is typically served after Cricket Matches between Eton and Harrow School!  It is so easy, you basically cut up some strawberry’s, whip up some cream and smash up some meringue nests and the layer it all together and voila – all done 🙂

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Summer in the UK is just not summer without a glass of Pimms… which is associated with all summer sporting activities eg. Tennis, Polo, Cricket, Rowing, in fact any excuse for a glass of Pimms which is an alcoholic (gin based) drink with 7-up added and then loaded with slices of orange, cucumber & strawberry’s and finished with a touch of “Mint”!   First produced back in 1823 by James Pimm, the great news is that I have seen this now being served in many bars throughout Montreal and you can even buy it at the SAQ and LCBO.. wow we are catching up!

It was a great throwback to our British summer days down the pub and we had a fabulous evening – thanks Deb!!

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Cheers & enjoy your week, and here’s a little “Union Jack Wedding Inspiration” to enjoy!!

Rachel Cripps-Gervais; An English Rose; An English Rose Wedding Planning; Montreal Wedding Planner; Montreal Wedding Planning; Eastern Townships Wedding Planning; Eastern Townships Wedding Planner; Union Jack Wedding

Image taken from Pinterest

Rachel xoxo

 

 

 

 

 

 

Montreal Wedding Craziness has started!!!

Wine with a Wedding Planner, Montreal Wedding Planner, Wedding Planner Montreal, Montreal Wedding Planning, An English Rose, Rachel Cripps-Gervais, Eastern Townships Wedding Planner, Eastern Townships Weddings, Wedding Planner Eastern Townships, Montreal Weddings, Montreal Wedding Day Coordinator, Montreal Destination Wedding, Montreal Same Sex Weddings, Le Madison, Vintage Wedding, Montreal Wedding, I know it’s been about 6 or 7 weeks since my last personal blog, which I know is a long time, but I have been working flat out on my Montreal weddings as well as our country Eastern Townships weddings for this year and next year and a lot of research came at the same time as well as 2 big weddings last weekend (more about them later)!

Montreal Wedding Venue’s

Recently we had clients in from North Virginia for the weekend to check out some Montreal venue’s, bakers, florists and officiants for their wedding, in order to maximise their time I scheduled 6 venue visits all in the same day.  This couple I would say were looking for a very modern, elegant venue with ornate features, ballroom in style with big chandeliers… also a touch of “Kardashian”.  We spent the day together looking at wedding venue’s and as the day progressed so did the shortlist and by the end of the day the couple were decided upon two venue’s.. now obviously I cannot reveal what they chose, but needless to say next June, their Montreal Wedding Venue will surpass their guests expectations as they will all be coming from ‘out of town’ to enjoy a Montreal Destination Wedding!

Choosing a wedding venue is the number one item on your planning check-list (after working out the budget obviously) as this sets the date for the wedding and the ‘style’ of the wedding.  I often find it’s a bit like buying a house, you have a check list of everything you want and then you fall in love with something totally different… in the past I’ve had clients ask me for something with history and character and then they chose modern and urban… other clients wanted romantic and they chose industrial, so I tell my clients to be open minded as you never know what’s going to pull at those heart strings.

This couple were torn between romantic and industrial and romantic took the lead, our couple also fell in love with a venue slightly above their original budget, so after lots of number crunching and negotiations, they decided to upgrade their wedding – this is something that I always give caution to, but at the end of the day it’s the couples choice and they are ecstatically happy and if the client is happy, then I am happy!

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Wedding Day Final Preparation’s

Last month we also scheduled a day full of meetings with the key Montreal vendors for our clients West Island Wedding taking place at the Sheraton, Dorval in mid-June.  If possible I like to do a final confirmation with the vendors and face to face it always so much more personal, so we kicked the day off with the Florist, re-confirming details, colours and timings etc… Then met up with the DJ to discuss key songs for the ceremony, entrances and first dances, afterwards we saw the Photographer to finalise the Engagement shoot and confirm timings for the day and ‘key’ shots not to be missed on the day!  We finished the day discussing the late night popcorn bar and after a little popcorn tasting the couple chose their 8 favourite flavours.

Two weeks ago we then met up with the Sheraton Hotel and did a walk through of the ceremony, cocktail and reception rooms to identify where everything was going to be set up on the day as well as go through all the timings and logistics… all in all 3 weeks before the wedding we are pretty much ready to go!

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Montreal Real Life Weddings – Olivia & Andrew

So last weekend was the wedding of Olivia and Andrew, who were so lovely and very easy to work with, I actually did Andrew’s sisters wedding a few years ago so was very excited to be supporting them both.  All I can say about this wedding is Olivia looking stunning, what came to mind was a 1950’s Hollywood Vintage Bride as you can see below!  The couple chose a very elegant style to their wedding with a colour scheme of Black, White and a touch of Silver and the Bridesmaids and Mothers all wore black and the 180 + guests enjoyed a “Black Tie Affair” at Le Madison.

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I did manage to schedule in a few, well actually quite a few social engagements of my own during April and May and have been enjoying my friends from St-Lazare (my old neighbourhood) as well as having Chris’s cousins from Trois Riviere visit us for the weekend, one of my besties from Little Italy and her hubby visited for the weekend too.  We also had the first BBQ of the year at our friends place in Eastman, well actually they are one of our previous couples who we married at the Ripplecove a few years ago and became very good friends with.  As well as dinner with local friends – phew, I know it always seems that my life is very full, but as I often say “Life is for Living” so lets get together and have some fun, especially now summer has arrived – finally!!!

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Now as I leave you I am off to celebrate my birthday (today), so enjoy your week and here’s a little “Salmon & Blush” wedding inspiration for you to enjoy…..Wine with a Wedding Planner, Montreal Wedding Planner, Wedding Planner Montreal, Montreal Wedding Planning, An English Rose, Rachel Cripps-Gervais, Eastern Townships Wedding Planner, Eastern Townships Weddings, Wedding Planner Eastern Townships, Montreal Weddings, Montreal Wedding Day Coordinator, Montreal Destination Wedding, Montreal Same Sex Weddings, Easter Wedding, Salmon & Blush Wedding Theme

Cheers, Rachel xxx

The Queen, The Sugar Shack & Easter Eggs with a Difference!

Wine with a Wedding Planner, Montreal Wedding Planner, Wedding Planner Montreal, Montreal Wedding Planning, An English Rose, Rachel Cripps-Gervais, Eastern Townships Wedding Planner, Eastern Townships Weddings, Wedding Planner Eastern Townships, Montreal Weddings, Montreal Wedding Day Coordinator, Montreal Destination Wedding, Montreal Same Sex Weddings, Queen Elizabeth 90th Birthday, Ayers CliffWell these last 10 days or so it has been nothing but social engagements!!  Any healthy eating went completely out the window and we have certainly be enjoying the occasions!

We recently attended a “Murder Mystery” event in honor of the Queens 90th birthday (which is on April 21st) to raise money for a local refugee family and had the wonderful Wade Lynch perform the role of “Lizzie” which he has done many times before even for Charles & Camilla a few years back.   Everybody donated their time and efforts and created a wonderful Mechoui meal for nearly 200 people I believe!

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Mechoui is also a great alternative to a BBQ especially for a county wedding or even the Rehearsal dinner the night before and if it is cooked in front of your guests quite a talking piece!

So Crown Jewels were stolen the bodyguard was murdered and the culprit was caught all in space of 3 hours LOL…. as some of you know I am a lover of Poutine and my British family and friends don’t quite understand this concept, so who better than to promote it for me other than the Queen herself… check out the video…it’s so funny!

March & April is a big time for Quebecors with sugaring off season upon us and it is very traditional to visit a “Sugar Shack” at this time of year to over indulge in lots and lots of Maple Syrup.  In fact some Sugar Shacks are booked months in advance… but luckily I organised a local night out for our new Social Club which I launched earlier this year in the Eastern Townships to a private Sugar Shack where I must admit we stuffed ourselves, along with BYOW – a perfect night for us.  For those outside the area, a traditional Sugar Shack meal consists of Pea & Ham Soup followed by a plate full of bacon, sausages, eggs, beans, potatoes, “oreille de crisse” translated into “Jesus Ears” LOL… for the Brits this is just like “Pork Scratchings”… then accompanied with beets (beetroot) and pickles and literally smothered in Maple Syrup.. yep we pour the syrup right over everything!!  Hey don’t mock it till you try it!  For dessert (Chris’s favourite) we then had another plate full of maple donuts, sugar pie, pudding chomeur and guess what… smothered in Maple Syrup LOL and if that is not enough… we then always finish the meal with rolling maple taffy in the snow.  All I can say is that it is a very good job that we only do this once a year!

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I must admit I would love to do a “Sugar Shack” wedding, I think this rustic design could be incredible and of course the meal would be unbelievable… for maple syrup lovers of course!

Of course in amongst all this eating we also had Easter and although we are not big celebrators of this holiday we certainly could not exclude the chance to indulge in a little chocolate and of course some “Scotch Eggs” which are a British delicacy claimed to be invented by the famous London store “Fortnum & Mason” back in 1738… because I miss like crazy I decided to have a go at making some myself along with some Creme Egg Cupcakes… yes I actually baked Creme Eggs in the Oven!!

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So we hope you are enjoying the season of “Sugar” and here’s a little “Easter” Wedding Inspiration for your to enjoy.

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Cheers, Rachel xx

 

 

 

 

Pompeii and The Boudoir!!

Wine with a Wedding Planner, Montreal Wedding Planner, Wedding Planner Montreal, Montreal Wedding Planning, An English Rose, Rachel Cripps-Gervais, Eastern Townships Wedding Planner, Eastern Townships Weddings, Wedding Planner Eastern Townships, Montreal Weddings, Montreal Wedding Day Coordinator, Montreal Destination Wedding, Montreal Same Sex Weddings, St Patrick's DaySo Happy Belated Paddy’s Day…. hope you all had a fun time out there celebrating around the world wherever you were and had a little Guinness to enjoy the day…. of course for the best Guinness you would have had to have been in Ireland, but being in Northern America, beggars can’t be choosers!

As you can see my day was also a “Green Day”, but I would really like to share with you just a few pictures of Ireland which really highlights the “Emerald Isles”!!  Wouldn’t Ireland be an amazing Honeymoon spot, staying in on of these romantic castles…. check out their tourism site here!

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Wine with a Wedding Planner, Montreal Wedding Planner, Wedding Planner Montreal, Montreal Wedding Planning, An English Rose, Rachel Cripps-Gervais, Eastern Townships Wedding Planner, Eastern Townships Weddings, Wedding Planner Eastern Townships, Montreal Weddings, Montreal Wedding Day Coordinator, Montreal Destination Wedding, Montreal Same Sex Weddings, Christian Gervais, Pompeii Exhibition, Montreal Fine Arts MuseumLast Weekend Chris and I also enjoyed visiting the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts specifically to enjoy the new Pompeii exhibition which was amazing.  It is amazing to think that back in AD 79 women where sent to school and educated, yet in today’s society that privilege is still not given to some in our so called ‘modern’ world.  What is also amazing is that nearly 2000 years ago they had frying pans, which still look very similar to ours and beautiful mirrors and glassware.  They also enjoyed ‘free love’ which was the norm… I guess that would not have gone down too well in Victorian times LOL!

The most haunting part of the exhibition is at the very end where there is plaster casts of bodies that were excavated and found in Pompeii and reserved, to me this was heartbreaking as you can see the actual positions people took to protect themselves when the volcano erupted.

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Wine with a Wedding Planner, Montreal Wedding Planner, Wedding Planner Montreal, Montreal Wedding Planning, An English Rose, Rachel Cripps-Gervais, Eastern Townships Wedding Planner, Eastern Townships Weddings, Wedding Planner Eastern Townships, Montreal Weddings, Montreal Wedding Day Coordinator, Montreal Destination Wedding, Montreal Same Sex Weddings, Christian Gervais, Maddy K Boudoir 2016, Hyatt Regency HotelWe also enjoyed Maddy K’s 2016 Wedding Boudoir which as I have mentioned before is like no other wedding show in Montreal – it is more of an event, and much more fun experiencing than traipsing around 100’s and 100’s of 10 x 10 booths at other more traditional wedding shows.  You get to meander around tasting lots of amazing samples of food and drinks… taking fun pictures at the photo booths and checking out the fashion show which includes honeymoon wear, lingerie and of course those stunning wedding gowns!

This year the large lighted letters are very much a big trend for weddings as well as a lot of fun ideas for your midnight tables from Pretzel Bars, Fruit Bars, Beavers Tails, Lolli-pop Bars, Cotton Candy (in England it’s called Candy Floss) and so much more – imagine all the fun you can have with your midnight tables!

I am also loving all the new table rentals… from gold Chairs to a linen made of Grass… wow these days your creativity can run wild!

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In light of St Patrick’s Day this week, we would like to share some “Green & Gold” Wedding inspiration for you…what I particularly love about this Wine with a Wedding Planner, Montreal Wedding Planner, Wedding Planner Montreal, Montreal Wedding Planning, An English Rose, Rachel Cripps-Gervais, Eastern Townships Wedding Planner, Eastern Townships Weddings, Wedding Planner Eastern Townships, Montreal Weddings, Montreal Wedding Day Coordinator, Montreal Destination Wedding, Montreal Same Sex Weddings, St Patrick's Wedding Theme, Gold & Green Wedding Themewedding design is the name place cards that they have created out of leaves and written on them in gold pen… so simple (and cost effective) as well as the car ‘obviously’… I also love the touches of gold with the Maid of Honor dress and the linen for the Cake Table.  Nothing overpowering and of course with greenery and garlands still being a big trend this is just perfect!

Have a great week everyone!!

Cheers, Rachel xx

 

Wedding Designing & Valentines Romance

Wine with a Wedding Planner, Montreal Wedding Planner, Wedding Planner Montreal, Montreal Wedding Planning, An English Rose, Rachel Cripps-Gervais, Eastern Townships Wedding Planner, Eastern Townships Weddings, Wedding Planner Eastern Townships, Montreal Weddings, Montreal Wedding Day Coordinator, Montreal Destination Wedding, Montreal Same Sex Weddings, Valentines DayOf course I got Rose’s on Valentines day… well I am “An English Rose” after all LOL… but this year I actually preferred these soft cream roses with edges of pink which were so pretty.  I had fun this year creating 8 little boxes hidden around the house with chocolates and love messages to Chris and it was even more amusing having him hunt them down…I even heard furniture being moved around the house!  Chris also loves Sushi and as I am not a fan of this myself I created him a lovely Sushi plate for his lunch.  Of course I was spoilt with a beautiful bracelet and dinner at my favourite Italian restaurant in Magog Chez Benito, for the amazing pasta alone  – sadly I had a stinking cold, so it was straight back to bed for me 😦  But I did manage to decorate our “branch” that we have hanging in our kitchen to give a bit of a romantic feel to the occasion!

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Now for those couples getting married this summer, about 6 months before is the time for really pulling together the overall look & feel of their special day and this past week or two I have been meeting up with two of my clients to present the decor for their weddings and I can tell you I have been working on two completely different styles which is why my job is always so interesting as no two weddings are the same!!

Our first couple live locally in Montreal and they are planning a West Island Wedding at the Sheraton Dorval with a Hollywood/Oscar feel to their special day using Red, Black & White as their colour palette and ensuring guests come in “Black Tie” to the evening ceremony at 6.00 pm… now I really can’t give too much away about what we are planning as that would ruin the surprise, but I can give you sneaky look the inspiration boards we created for them to help with the overall look and feel!

I appreciate for couples these days planning a wedding with everything out there on the market it can become quite overwhelming and horribly you could end up with a real ‘mish-mash’ of a look, so it is really important to create an inspiration board and keep the same look and feel throughout the wedding with of course a few surprises!

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Last month we also conducted a tasting with our couple and we always take pictures of the food to ensure that it is the same size dish that your guests will be served and don’t be afraid to push back to the chef’s if you don’t like it exactly as it is or wish to change something in the menu – couples are paying for this and it’s a big expense.  We also met up with the stationary designer and spent a morning selecting the style of the invitations.. again if you want everything to match then the invitations through to the menu’s through to the thank you on the favors should all match!

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Our second couple from Calgary are going for a completely different look, this will be a country wedding in at the Manoir Rouville-Campbell in south/east of Montreal which actually looks like an Old English Manor house – this time my clients wanted a soft lemon & silver feel for their wedding… It will be an outdoor ceremony by the waters edge, and again without giving too much away here is a feel of what we will be creating!!

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So as we are still in the month of “Love”… here’s a little Red Rose Wedding Inspiration for you to enjoy!Wine with a Wedding Planner, Montreal Wedding Planner, Wedding Planner Montreal, Montreal Wedding Planning, An English Rose, Rachel Cripps-Gervais, Eastern Townships Wedding Planner, Eastern Townships Weddings, Wedding Planner Eastern Townships, Montreal Weddings, Montreal Wedding Day Coordinator, Montreal Destination Wedding, Montreal Same Sex Weddings, Valentines Day Wedding, Red Rose Wedding Theme

Cheers, Rachel xx