December 26th, 2012 No Comments

weddings with matthew robbins: 6 steps for successful hunting & gathering for your wedding inspiration

Green is definitely a big focus color for 2013 as well as a return to crisp clean colors. But any color combination or personal objects can serve as seeds for unique and personal wedding designs. Think of planning your wedding as a process of hunting and gathering: You’re hunting for personal, meaningful items and gathering design details that will allow you to bring out the elements you most love about these items. Fresh ideas can come from anywhere, be it an interesting trinket I pick up in a Paris flea market, or a beautiful piece of fruit at my local farmers’ market. The key is to always keep your eyes open- you never know where you’ll spot that little something that inspires your entire event!

Here is my process for turning an inspiring object into your ideal wedding wedding or event.

1. PREPARE. First things first, be open-minded as you create a list of shops and markets to scour for inspiring items. Sometimes the most beautiful objects can come from the most unexpected places.

2. HUNT. Look around and keep your eyes wide open! Travel, go shopping, go flea-marketing, and look through your closets too. And don’t worry if the things that begin to inspire you don’t take a cohesive shape at first; there will be time to edit later.

3. CONSIDER. Once you’ve chosen your inspirational object, begin by breaking down the elements of that object according to color, pattern, texture, material, shape, and the mood it evokes.

4. MAP. Next, envision how you want your event to unfold, and consider how your inspiration can enhance your chosen venue. Take some time to think about all of the logistical elements that you’ll need to work out and determine how your inspiration might influence those as well.

5. MATCH. For me, this is the really fun part: Get creative and consider how and where you can incorporate your inspiration into all the different aspects of your event. Think about all of the ways you can inject the color palette and mood into your affair.

6. GATHER. Now it’s time for all of your inspired ideas to come to life. Once you’ve identified how to integrate your inspiration, go shopping, visit with your caterer, check out what your rental company has to offer, choose your invitations, stroll through the flower market, and start putting together your own truly inspired event!

(I keep the following tools with me at all times when I’m planning an event, and you should too: A sketchbook/notebook for keeping notes and storing magazine tears. A digital camera to take pictures of objects you love and venues you visit. And a great bag for gathering materials.)

Matthew Robbins is the author of Inspired Weddings, Designing Your Big Day with Favorite Objects & Family Treasures and is a regular contributor to Martha Stewart Weddings & the Huffington Post.