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August Activities

Can you believe that summer is over (we’re hoping for an Indian Summer though as we have been loving this hot weather! Shame about the storms though!) and it’s September. August has continued in the same way as June and July started and it’s been another good and productive month for us. A mix of weddings and events, interspersed with tastings and meetings, we are settling into the swing of things and ready for what September is going to bring. That’s for next month however, so what has August provided…

Food and Events

August has given us two of our biggest events and two rather big weddings…which have been super fun! The first biggy was mid-way through with a glorious marquee wedding set in the most picturesque of gardens. It had a midsummers garden theme and the florals were so impressive! Guests were served from a rather salubrious gold bar –what else and sipping champagne and gin cocktails, it set the scene magnificently. A delicious feast of figs, beef fillet, a trio of puds and our delightful edible garden were served, along with a selection of cheese and a round of fish & chips to finish the evening. Our kind of meal!

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The second biggy was just at the end and set in a quintessentially English setting, was just truly scrumptious in every way! This wedding had a more relaxed and informal feel in the way of our gourmet BBQ’s, which on such a beautifully sunny day was just super and guests loved it!

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Amidst these two, we’ve had a few other smaller events and afternoon tea galore, which has proved popular this month. We do love afternoon tea and if you’re having a garden party, then this is the perfect fit!

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Weddings

After a rather busy July, our August is keeping up the momentum and we are still going strong through Wedding season. This month has mainly consisted of finalising plans for a beautiful intimate wedding in September and we’re really looking forward to this one. Set in a beautiful walled garden with the most glorious planting and florals, it’s going to be an absolute floral fantasia – that’s what we’re calling it anyway!

It’s going to be filled with some wonderful DIY detailing and an abundance of colour and a serious flower fest with some amazing food. We’re particularly looking forward to a bit of a vegan and health vibe which we can’t wait to try (perks of the job and all!).

Mid-month we were treated to a wedding breakfast at the seriously stunning Corinthia Hotel in London. Along with several other superstar planners, bloggers and editors we enjoyed a glass of fizz followed by a delicious breakfast and cake. We also got a tour of the spaces, restaurants and a penthouse. We’ve already decided that we are going to move in –it’s so us! Great Hire provided some fabulous ghost tables and chairs which looked amazing within the Ballroom setting and paired with some wonderful tableware from the amazing Duchess & Butler and some beautiful florals by By Appointment Only it created the perfect setting. It was lovely catching up with the gorgeous Abigail Bloom who provided the most amazing of cakes. We also got to chat about the super tasty cakes she provided for one of our couples in July – the chocolate cake was DIVINE!

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The remainder of the month has been filled with venue visiting at the glorious Stoke Park (where we are a preferred supplier and will also be at their Wedding Showcase in October)  and Wisley Gardens and  gaining an abundance of quotes for a wedding next year and we can already tell it’s going to be a good one!

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Until next time…Emma. x

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July Jaunts

How much have we loved this month – a whole lot, that’s how much! It has been our busiest and maybe best to date and has taken some serious hard work from our team but it has been so much fun! July has been jam packed full of so many wonderful weddings with a smattering of some fabulous birthdays in between and we can’t wait to tell you all about them…

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Food and Events

Well July really was the month for Weddings and we have catered for some rather wonderful ones and all in some seriously amazing locations. This month saw a mixture of marquees, gardens and stately homes, each providing their own merits and we have been lucky to work in some seriously fabulous venues.

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In the earlier part of the month, we catered for a wedding that we also planned (see more below). 150 guests were treated to some delicious canapes and one of our favourite desserts finished the meal; you really have to try our Lime Posset – yummy!

Trio of Pud

The rest the month saw a mixture of formal sit down meals, some fancy buffet’s and a couple of Gourmet BBQ’s with some seriously tasty treats on offer. If you have a more informal wedding and it happens to be a beautiful summer day, then our Gourmet BBQ’s are the best; they work so well in an informal setting and provides the taste and presentation without the formality of a plated service. Great for a festival or more boho affair and also amazing for Birthdays.

The Birthday’s we catered for opted for a relaxed BBQ too and we were thrilled to plan and style one of these too. The clients had a joint birthday and anniversary party with a customised bar (and champagne flowing until the wee small hours) and opted for a stylish Mediterranean feel to their décor. Banquet style tables were dressed in stunning foliage wreaths with herbs mixed in and foliage chandeliers hung upon the entrance, creating the most stunning welcome for guests. Thank you to Lily’s Flowers for these!

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We ended with a rather grand affair at the most picturesque of venues and can’t wait to work there again. Guests were treated to the most splendid of views whilst sitting for dinner and the ceremony space – serious WOW factor. A wonderful way to end the month!

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Weddings

What a month! This one has quite simply been wonderful! So so lovely. We had two weddings that we have fully planned and styled and although July has been our busiest month so far, it’s been really quite dreamy, with two of the loveliest couples that I hope will remain friends with us for many years to come.

We started the month with the wedding of C&R, a super stylish couple from the States who fell in love with England and particularly Windsor on a visit a few years back and once engaged, knew that this would be the place for their wedding. With this in mind, we opted for a slightly formal English garden party affair with a Gatsby edge; think Downton Abbey mixed with the Gatsby party vibe and style. Hosted at various locations at Windsor, all 70 guests were flown in from across the States to join in a weekend celebration of fun, food and partying. A proper English pub meal on the riverside was the order of the day on the Saturday evening, with the main event on the Sunday. Dressed in garden party lounge style dress, the glamorous couple and guests attended the ceremony at Windsor Guildhall before heading to the river and setting sail on board a beautiful launch from the French Brothers. Guests enjoyed a traditional afternoon tea whilst listening to Jazz and enjoying a lazy trip along the Thames, taking in the sights of the English countryside. After this little jaunt, guests made their way back to the Sir Christopher Wren hotel for cake, cocktails and canapes, all followed by a fabulous feast. The highlight of the evening was a 10 piece swing band (The Mini Big Band) who really got the party started, they were serious fun!

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We worked with some wonderful suppliers including Patrick Collins who is an ace Toastmaster, Abigail Bloom – just look at that cake, David Bostock – photographer extraordinaire, Classic Crockery (fab cutlery and charger plates which really highlighted that glam Gatsby feel) and Lavender Green who provided the most stunning of florals!

A couple of weeks later saw the wedding of M&L. They chose to celebrate in the bride’s family home which had the most stunning of gardens and prettiest church right next door – how picturesque! The style and feel of the day was a relaxed garden party, with a botanical and classic colour scheme of whites, greens and greys. A traditional church ceremony followed by canapes, champagne-a-plenty and garden games (which were an absolute hoot), with the beautiful sound of piano playing in the background that took place in the glorious gardens, all under the most stunning sunny day! The marquee was decorated in simple white florals from Lily’s Flowers, grey linens and place cards were leaves taken from the garden to bring all elements of the wedding together. Guests enjoyed a beautiful three course meal with the yummiest of puds and this then was followed by the cutting of a serious WOW factor cake – seriously, just wait until we have the pics and then dancing, with the band and DJ getting the party started and provided by the fab Eight Ray Music.  Cocktails were flowing in the bar tent, all done by the marvellous Box Seventy Seven and it’s fair to say these were super popular and with some fab personalised names, created a talking point amongst guests…as did the quiz (boy did I have fun marking that one!)

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We can’t wait to show you more pics from these weddings and particularly the video, which we already know will be A M A Z I N G!

There is so much to tell, but we shall keep it brief for now and once the images are back, we will share the love with you lovely lot. A huge thanks to all the fab suppliers involved, serious dream team’s right there!

In other news, aside from finalising some fab plans for a Sept wedding, which is going to be soo floral and fabulous, a couple of our wedding inspiration shoots have been featured and we could not be more thrilled! Check out the links for the full description and suppliers for this wonderful Rustic Botanical and Romantic look at Le Manoir featured on B.Loved and for the other, well you have to go and buy the most recent You & Your Wedding Magazine!

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Oh yes…and we just happen to be now be one of Stoke Park’s preferred wedding planners and stylists!

Phew! What a month and we are still buzzing from all of the excitement and activity! Until next time…

Emma. x

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Westwood Society Dinner

A couple of weeks ago saw the second Westwood Society Dinner held and once again we had the pleasure of designing and catering for the event. Westwood were thrilled to introduce Mike Roddy, their new interim CEO at the dinner, quite the special occasion! The last dinner had a very feminine and bright feel, so we wanted to do something a little different this time around…something a little unexpected. Cue succulents and drift wood!

We wanted the feel of the dinner and centrepiece to have a more natural and slightly more masculine feel to proceedings. Gone were the abundance of big blousy florals, in was texture and lighter, more pastel and earthy colours. Lily’s Flowers were the florists extraordinaire once again, who understood our brief perfectly. Driftwood framed the centre of the table, mixed with wooden logs and pots. Succulents and Cactus filled the space and added a tougher edge to the centrepiece. Lilac and blue hydrangea softened this and bought in an element of colour, which contrasted and paired beautifully to the earthy green napkins. Mercury glass tea lights and votives added that touch of glam that any Westwood Society Dinner needs! The guests commented how different and wonderful it was…we couldn’t have agreed any more!

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The lilac of the hydrangeas harmonised perfectly with the menus that doubled up as name cards. A soft and flowy font that reflected the twists and turns of the driftwood, sat on a water-coloured effect background to the name. A simple but stunning design by Printed Love, that captured the feel of the evening charmingly.

Westwood 2 Menu

The menu was a sumptuous affair and the starter a particular favourite of ours. All of the produce was seasonal and the menu designed to make the most of the ingredients at their peak, including heritage candy beets and micro rocket in the starter. Guests were served Champagne on arrival, with a few nibbles to whet the appetite. Upon seating, the first course was served; Beef carpaccio, parmesan, pickled radish, artichoke, rocket and truffle oil. A beautiful dish to start, not only on the palette, but on the eye. Each dish was paired with a specially chosen wine. The accompaniment to the beef starter was a deliciously fruity and earthy red; Beaune Cent-Vignes 1er Cru Albert Morot.

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For the main we served Free-range breast of chicken, roasted glazed heritage carrots, swiss chard, girolle mushrooms, pomme puree and a thyme jus, served on earth stoneware. A popular dish, and one that was paired to a crisp and fresh white; Puligny-Montrachet 2013 Jean-Louis Chavy, Burgundy.

To finish the evening, guests were served a summery and fruity pudding of Lemon posset, blueberry crème, vanilla tuille, meringue and shortbread. A wonderfully light and zingy dessert that certainly tickled the guests taste buds. The wine paired with our dessert was a Cloudy Bay Late Harvest Riesling 2007 from Marlborough. A stunning and velvety sticky with notes of apricot, honey and orange blossom that lingered on the tongue and enhanced the citrus and fruity flavours within the dessert. A glorious combination!

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All in all, another fabulous evening, enjoyed by the Westwood Society. We can’t wait for the next!

Goose & Berry are a Luxury Boutique Catering, Wedding, Event & Brand Experience Planning & Design company who specialise in Weddings, Social and Corporate Events.  We are based in Marlow & London and cover London, Buckinghamshire, Berkshire, Oxfordshire and the Home Counties.

www.gooseandberry.co.uk

Did you know we also Plan and Design Weddings and Events! http://www.gooseandberry.co.uk/event-design-goose-and-berry

Twitter: www.twitter.com/gooseandberry

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Tablescapes – Setting the Scene

So I’m sure you’ve heard of table settings or dressing the table, but what exactly is a tablescape? Well in fairness, not that different from table settings or dressing a table. The difference lies in that every item upon your table tops – such as centrepieces, linen, crockery, cutlery, glassware, place cards, menus and décor were all chosen specifically and for a reason.

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Tablescapes are designed, planned and created to add that WOW statement to your event and wedding. They are focal points, they can change and impact upon the feel and mood of your meal and they set the scene, showcasing objects or enhancing and projecting an overall theme to your day.

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Pinterest and Blogs are filled with images of tablescapes and there are so many to take inspiration from. They really are like mini landscapes of tabledoms (ok I made that word up, but a table kingdom doesn’t quite sound right!) created by marvellous vision and style. Budget dependent, these can be things of absolute marvel and wonder, or kept clean, simple and stylish.

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If you want to build tablescapes into the styling of your wedding, knowing where to start might be quite a daunting thought. Fear not! Help is at hand. Firstly, you need to think about a theme or colour scheme you may have. This will help guide you in a direction, so all elements join and flow seamlessly together, making each eventually feel as if they belong in one big tablescape harmony (I get carried away easily I’m afraid!)

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Secondly, think about what flowers you are having and whether you can use these as your centrepieces. Centrepieces are a big part of the tablescape! They don’t always have to be floral, but (and if you’re anything like me and adore all things floral) they help create a focal point and look simply stunning. Yes, they are tradional but if you have a vision in mind or have seen something you want to create, ask your florist or whoever is doing your flowers, if you can do something similar, traditional, modern or otherwise!

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Thirdly – what linen will you be choosing, or will you be having the table surface on show? There are so many new and wonderful linens on the market, so you don’t have to settle for just plain white or ivory. So many textures, materials, effects and colours are on offer, so do a little research and have a play around; matching different materials, layers and colours. Mix and match tablecloths with napkins and order samples, see what you can create. Also play around with napkin folding and styles. It sounds daft, but honestly, there are sooo many ways of folding a napkin! If you don’t believe me, look it up, or look at the way different restaurants display theirs. (Working in a 5* hotel has certainly given me good napkin training…ok…observation…my folding skills leave a lot to be desired!) Depending on the type of starter you are serving or where you have place cards / menus, and the type of plates, this could impact the fold of the napkin too.

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Next up is the crockery and cutlery. Some venues may have specifics that they require you to use, but you can add the creativity into the centrepieces etc. If you have the flexibility to choose your own, then see what you can find and order. Look at images and blogs, find hire companies or ask your caterer/planner to help. Order samples and see what works. Yes, it’s a slightly painstaking task, but it doesn’t have to be, it can be fun…and if you don’t want to do it, then having a wedding planner and stylist who does this kind of thing for a living, may be just the right option for you! There are so many shapes and styles out there; including charger plate options and cutlery now comes in different styles and metals too. Think about your theme and overall style of the day and pick what you think will work with the rest of your items on the tables.

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Glassware may again be restricted by venues, but depending on what drinks you are serving, you can have as many or as little glasses on the table as you wish. There are many options available to you and if you are wine experts…and I don’t mean you manage to get through a bottle a night…then you will understand the type of glass the wine is served in has an effect on the taste. All little details, but this is where tablescapes come into their own…the details are all important!

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Stationery…the design and style may well have already been chosen and that is fine! The placement of these can be what you have fun playing around with. Set up an example table at home and place the table number, menu and place cards (you may have joined the two together) in different places – above, on or to the side of the plate. Again, think about if the food is already going to be served at the table (don’t then put anything on the plate or charger plate as guests won’t see it!) and make sure it’s visible.

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You may have other décor such as props, table crystals, quizzes or photos that you would like positioned upon the table. If you have kept the table quite simple, these may look great, however if you have gone quite floral and crockery / cutlery and glassware heavy, then consider how much you need on there. You want everything to look polished and that it all belongs, not just thrown together and everything piled on there just because.

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Remember, the idea of a tablescape is to be planned, designed and created to add that wow statement to your wedding. It needs to evoke emotions and really set the scene and enhance the styling. However, you don’t need to spend all your time planning the design and creating it and getting stressed about it, but some thought does need to go into it. Have fun in the design and really show off your style!

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Words by Emma

Images via Pinterest

Goose & Berry are a Luxury Boutique Catering, Wedding, Event & Brand Experience Planning & Design company who specialise in Weddings, Social and Corporate Events.  We are based in Marlow & London and cover London, Buckinghamshire, Berkshire, Oxfordshire and the Home Counties.

www.gooseandberry.co.uk

Did you know we also Plan and Design Weddings and Events! http://www.gooseandberry.co.uk/event-design-goose-and-berry

Twitter: www.twitter.com/gooseandberry

Facebook: www.facebook.com/gooseandberry 

Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/gooseandberry

Instagram: www.instagram.com/gooseandberry

Google +: https://plus.google.com/106611460730365369102/posts

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