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by Robbin Montero

            Clever couples can enhance their wedding celebrations with a theme. I offered suggestions for weddings with holiday or period themes in the last column. Here are a few more theme ideas.


            The beauty and fragrance of a garden ceremony and reception is romantic and very  memorable. Walk to your vows down a petal-scattered pathway. Assign guests to tables named after flowers and with matching flower centerpieces. Lay a delicate flower at each place setting or hand a single rose to ladies when they arrive at the ceremony or reception.

            If you’ve always dreamed of a romantic Wine Country wedding, choose a winery venue – especially during the harvest and crush season –  and use your imagination! Decorate with the rich fall hues of purple, orange and red. The fragrance of a cask or barrel room combined with oodles of candles to illuminate the dusky ambiance creates an extraordinarily romantic setting. Garnish your wedding cake with ivy and edible grapes and weave them into centerpieces to create colorful, tasty displays. Name each table after a different grape varietal, such as Chardonnay, Cabernet, and Zinfandel, remembering to always label the head table as the Champagne table. Custom-labeled bottles of wine or bottle openers engraved with the bridal couple’s names make meaningful favors.

            Finding her Prince Charming makes a bride feel like a princess. Cinderella weddings are always in style, and are a tribute to the esteem in which she holds her future spouse. Cinderella-type gowns and accessories, such as a tiara, are also part of this popular theme. Secure a horse and buggy for transportation to the event. You’ll find clever theme-related favors, such as glass or resin slippers filled with candy. Incorporate fairy tale ideas into your walk down the aisle and your first dance. Adorn your cake top with a themed ornament. This story-book wedding theme is the perfect shoe-in!


For the fun of it

            Another very popular theme is the country-western party. Tuxedos with bolo ties, cowboy hats and boots for gentlemen bring the western spirit alive. Lace gloves for the ladies lend a feminine touch to fashions of the Old West. Hire a fiddler or guitarist for the ceremony and a country-western band for the reception. Serve a western-style barbeque with a menu featuring beef ribs and corn-on-the-cob. A square dance caller can quickly organize guests to learn a few dance patterns before leading everyone in a hoe-down. Let your imagination out of the corral and everyone will remember your western wedding was a hoot.


Sparkly, spicy themes

            If fireworks went off the first time you and your betrothed kissed, a red, white and blue Fourth of July reception with fireworks may be perfect when you seal your commitment with a kiss. This theme calls for comfortable summer dressing and casual, cool summer foods. Place American flags as street markers to the reception and use tiny flags on hors d’oeuvres. Incorporate Uncle Sam hats into centerpieces. Provide guests with sparklers for the toasts. Choose a site that has a fireworks display scheduled or, with permission, hire professionals to close the party with a romantic grand finale fireworks display at sundown.

            Ole! Another red-hot theme is comes from South of the Border. Sombrero centerpieces and colorful napkins folded into fans will bring reception tables to life. Margaritas and Mexican-style beers perfectly complement a Tex-Mex barbeque or Mexican-American food stations serving fajitas, tacos and chimichangas. Enliven the party with a Mariachi band. And don’t forget the traditional piñata for all to take a swing at in hopes of retrieving delectable treats.


            Whether you choose a graceful, romantic theme or a more casual, fun theme, your guests will enjoy the change of pace and remember your big day.


“Stress Free, Leave the Details to Me,” is the tried and true philosophy of Robbin Montero, California Wine Country wedding planning expert and owner of A Dream Wedding.  Robbin is the premier wedding planner in the Northern California Wine Country, transforming any vision into the perfectly designed wedding creation. Robbin and her weddings have been featured in The Knot, Brides, Elite Magazine, Your Wedding Day and Vine Napa/Sonoma magazines, and ImportantOccasions.com. Travel & Leisure magazine calls Robbin, “The expert wedding planner in the California Wine Country.” www.a-dreamwedding.com

Robbin Montero is a wedding coordinator and special events planner in Northern California.

©2006 Robbin Montero 707-579-5886

This article cannot be reprinted without Robbin Montero’s expressed written permission.