John’s 60th/Retirement Party

When John came to us with the idea to create a big bash to celebrate both his retirement as well as his 60th, we immediately fell in love with the idea of using Jimmy Buffett, one of his favorites, as the theme. Able to play off the common initials of J.B., we began to create an entire “J.B.” celebration!

The clincher of our planning was the day we booked the Tonga Room in San Francisco. You almost couldn’t get more perfect for a venue for this party. Bathing it in greens and blues, with a Margaritaville parrot lit above the bar, and a special Margaritaville bar in the back, complete with neon bar sign, we transformed the space into a Jimmy Buffet paradise. Honoring all of John’s favorite foods, guests were presented with a “treasure map” as they arrived, revealing the location of each food station and entertainment area. From AT&T Park with beer flights, hot dogs and garlic fries to Fisherman’s Wharf with chowder, we covered all the favorite S.F. spots.

The band and DJ kept the party going with lively music, but the real entertainment was from a performance by a family friend of a custom-written Jimmy Buffett song about John’s retirement, and a hosted roast, Comedy Central style, honoring John. At midnight (the beginning of John’s actual birthday), champagne toasts with designed mini cupcakes hovering above the glass were brought out and we all ended the night singing Happy Birthday. It was certainly a night to remember!

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Thanks to all our fabulous vendors –
Venue: The Tonga Room
Photography: Kevin Chin Photography
Catering: The Fairmont Hotel San Francisco
Lighting: Got Light?
DJ: Caliber DJs
Band: Island Groove
Transportation: Corinthian Ground Transportation
Rentals: Bright Event Rentals
Paper Goods: Caitlin Arnold Weddings and Events
Photo Booth: TapSnap

2017 WeddingWire Couples’ Choice Awards®

Caitlin Arnold Weddings and Events Honored For Excellence With 2017 WeddingWire Couples’ Choice Award®

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Santa Clara, CA – February 8, 2017 – WeddingWire, the leading global online marketplace for the wedding and event industry, announced Caitlin Arnold Weddings and Events as a winner of the esteemed 2017 WeddingWire Couples’ Choice Awards® for Wedding and Event Design and Coordination in the Bay Area!

The Couples’ Choice Awards recognize the top five percent of wedding professionals on WeddingWire who demonstrate excellence in quality, service, responsiveness, and professionalism. The prestigious awards are given to the top local wedding professionals across more than 20 service categories, from wedding venues to wedding photographers, based on their professional achievements from the previous year.

The WeddingWire Couples’ Choice Awards winners are determined solely based on reviews from real newlyweds and their experiences working with Caitlin Arnold Weddings and Events. Award-winning vendors are distinguished for the quality, quantity, consistency and timeliness of the reviews they have received from their past clients.

“The Couples’ Choice Awards’ ninth year features one of the most impressive groups of dedicated and acclaimed wedding professionals yet,” said Timothy Chi, CEO, WeddingWire. “It is our honor to work with high-caliber merchants, such as Caitlin Arnold Weddings and Events, who not only make a couple’s big day possible, but also contribute to the more than 2.5 million U.S. reviews represented on WeddingWire. We congratulate all of this year’s winners on their achievements.”

As a Couples’ Choice Awards® winner, Caitlin Arnold Weddings and Events is highlighted on WeddingWire, which is comprised of more than 200,000 wedding professionals in the U.S.

Caitlin Arnold Weddings and Events is thrilled to be one of the topWedding and Event Design and Coordination in the Bay Area on WeddingWire. We would like to thank our past clients for taking the time to review our business on WeddingWire. We truly value all of our clients and appreciate the positive feedback that helped us earn a 2017 WeddingWire Couples’ Choice Award.

For more information about Caitlin Arnold Weddings and Events, please visit our WeddingWire Storefront today.

To learn more about the WeddingWire Couples’ Choice Awards®, please visit www.weddingwire.com/couples-choice-awards.

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About WeddingWire, Inc.
WeddingWire, Inc. is the leading global online marketplace connecting consumers with event and creative professionals. Operating within a $200 billion industry, WeddingWire, Inc. hosts 10 million monthly unique users across its mobile and web platforms. Consumers around the world are able to read over 3 million vendor reviews and search, compare and book from a database of over 400,000 businesses globally. It provides these businesses the technology they need to serve their clients through advertising, marketing and business management tools such as websites, payment processing, invoicing and contracts. Founded in 2007, the WeddingWire portfolio of sites serves couples and businesses across 15 countries in North America, Latin America, Europe and Asia, making it the worldwide leader in weddings with brands including Bodas.net, Casamentos.com.br, Matrimonio.com and more. The company employs more than 800 and maintains global headquarters in Washington, DC and international headquarters in Barcelona, Spain.

Finding the perfect wedding attire with The Black Tux

A new year has begun and with that a new wedding season is on it’s way! For some, when they see the wedding attire on the invitations they’re confused as to what the appropriate attire for the day is – especially if what’s needed isn’t currently in their closet. Luckily for our readers we recently connected directly with the folks at The Black Tux who put together a cheat sheet for a great Wedding Guest Style Guide!

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We’ve referred many of our couples and their family and friends to The Black Tux over the last couple of years and are always excited when we see another suit being added to their ever-growing collection. If you haven’t had the chance to check them out or if you’re in the need for the perfect event attire, we encourage you to check out their site. They’ve always impressed us with their perfectly tailored suits and we know they can help you dress to impress at your next event as well!

Allison and Mike on Borrowed & Blue

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Take a look into Allison and Mike’s darling wedding featured on Borrowed & Blue. Caitlin worked intimately with the couple which was fun on a professional and personal level as she has known the bride since high school! The day came together beautifully and was extra special for the bride’s family since it was held in their backyard. Check out their feature on Borrowed & Blue!

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Venue: Private home in Saratoga, California

Photography: Pictilio

Catering: Weir and Associates Catering

Rentals: Unica Party Rentals

Cake: Icing on the Cake Bakery

Florals: Sweetness and Light Floral Design

Hair Artist: Lux Image Agency

Makeup Artist: Joslyn Soliman Makeup

Stationery and Graphic Design: Sharon Her

Bride’s Attire: Trudy’s Brides

Music: MK Mobile Sound

Restrooms: Hanson and Fitch

Lighting: Saier Services

Transportation: Corinthian Parking

Brianna and TJ

By: Chelsea Hudson

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Brianna and TJ’s Mission Ranch wedding in Carmel was darling, featuring spectacular views and fluffy sheep dotting the pastures that looked out to the Pacific Ocean. They said their vows in front of their closest family and friends in an intimate ceremony with the picturesque view as their back drop. Shades of purple and dashes of yellow lended themselves beautifully to create a playful environment, while watercolored accents and twinkle lights in the barn gave the evening a whimsical feel.

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Congratulations again, Brianna and TJ!

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A big thanks to all of our vendors:
Venue and Catering – Mission Ranch
Photographer – Ken Kienow
Bakery – Parker-Lusseau
Floral Design – Pink Petals
Ceremony and Cocktail Music – The Abbott Brothers
Reception Music – Caliber DJs 
Hair and Make Up Artist – Simply Samantha

 

Kristi and Kevin

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Kristi and Kevin got married in true bright and sophisticated fashion at Villa Montalvo last August. With Kate Spade as our inspiration style, and Kristi’s love of flowers, we decorated the historic Villa with stripes, outdoor garden party-esque details and gorgeous petal-full flowers everywhere.

Kristi and Kevin had an early-established foundation of outdoor games and sports in their relationship, so we not only got to design a custom monogram for them incorporating a croquet mallet and golf club, but had custom lawn games for guests to enjoy in the summer afternoon as well.

After the sun set and dancing had everyone partying, we transformed the Solarium at the Villa into an ice cream parlor, complete with an especially designed live action ice cream sandwich station. It was the hit of the event – guests kept asking us all night what was going on in that room and when they got to see it!

Each and every guest left that evening feeling like a kid again with the youthful fun that permeated each special touch, and we were honored to have put it all together with this full of life couple!

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Check out their publication in Ceremony Magazine!

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Thanks to all our fabulous vendors –
Venue: Villa Montalvo
Photography: Rhee Bevere Photography
Catering: Melons
Videography: One Day Pictures
Dessert: CREAM
Florals: Lani Elizabeth Floral Design
Hair and Makeup: Julie Morgan Hair and Makeup
Lighting: Enhanced Lighting
Childcare: Sitters Unlimited
DJ: Denon and Doyle
Transportation: Corinthian Ground Transportation
Rentals: Blueprint Studios, Napa Valley Linens, Stuart Party Rentals
Photo Booth: Smile City Photo Booth
Gown: Amy Kuschel
Accommodations: Westin Palo Alto, Sheraton Palo Alto, The Inn at Saratoga

Borrowed & Blue Interview

Ever wonder what an event planner’s job really entails? Borrowed and Blue, a locally-focused online wedding resource, teamed up with us to quiz us on a few insights into our world of our event planning!

Here’s our Q&A with Borrowed & Blue, with answers from Chelsea, Brenda and Caitlin:  

What is your favorite moment of a wedding day?

We had a tie on our team between the first dance and first look. Brenda’s argument for first dance: “I love watching the couple dance to a song they feel is special to them or watching a creative dance they spent months on perfecting.” Chelsea’s argument for first look: It is such a genuine moment between the couple where they can just breathe a sigh of relief, hold one another and have a moment before their lives change forever.”

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How would you describe your event aesthetic?

We personally all have our own tastes, in fact I think that Brenda, Chelsea and Caitlin would all design a completely different event if it were up to each of us to do it from scratch. But ultimately, we want each event to reflect the client and the guests, so it’s individual, unique and non-replicable. We prefer personal, classic events that will stand the test of time.

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What is the first thing you ask when you sit down with a couple?

We ask to get to know them and have them tell us about themselves. Other than your photographer and your officiant, there is no vendor that is going to be as “intimate” with you that day as us, so it’s important to us that we all know each other and like each other, at least a little bit. We’re a “face to face” vendor — so it’s good to meet face to face and make sure we click!

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What’s the best piece of advice for couples who just got engaged?

Take some time to celebrate! Planning a wedding is exciting but it is also usually a long process. Take a few days before you dive into things to share the news with friends and family. Additionally, we think it’s important for couples to talk about what’s important to each individual before decisions are made so that the wedding encompasses both of their personalities and priorities.  

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What are your thoughts on DIY weddings?

This depends on the individual. Some people are fortunate enough to be artsy and have the drive to do special projects — and also have time in their life to take on these projects! Other folks either don’t have the creative side, don’t have the time, or both. That doesn’t mean your day will be any less creative or personalized. It just means you know when it’s best to delegate something to a pro, or source ideas from the experts!

Frankly, we do the same thing when we hit a design funk or wall — we look to our design vendors to collaborate, and ultimately come up with something better than we would have all on our own.

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What’s your favorite of all the San Francisco wedding venues to work at?

Gosh, this is a hard one. I really don’t know if we have a favorite since each has something unique to offer. That being said, I think we particularly love museums or historic venues — they just have such a class and vibe on their own that each client tends to interpret differently, so there are never two events the same at any of these venues.

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What is the most important part of wedding planning?

To us, the most important part of wedding planning is getting to know the couple and building a relationship with them. We work with clients who have just gotten engaged to clients only a few months out from their wedding and are able to build a strong relationship with all of them. We want to truly understand the vision they have for their big day and be able to execute that for them by being their advocate throughout the process.

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What’s the most frequent mistake couples make when planning their wedding?

Clients sometimes forget that their wedding is a reflection of them as a couple. They make decisions based off what they have seen or what they think their guests would like to see. They often also partake in traditions that do not mean anything to them but feel obligated because it’s something you are “supposed” to do. It really takes the personality out of the event and guests can feel it is not genuine.

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What makes Caitlin Arnold Weddings and Events different from other event planners?

From what we have heard from our vendors (who see a lot of events each year!), we go farther above and beyond for our clients than any other planner — and yes, we are super proud of that and maintain it as our one bragging moment! In all seriousness, though, we love taking on events that we feel passionate about, and to us, we pour our whole selves into each event and that is what makes us, and our events, unique — there’s only one CAWE team!

 

If you’re looking to book a planner for your own event, we would be happy to chat with you more about what we do! A special thanks to Borrowed & Blue for the Q&A!

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A special thanks to our photographers:
Julie Weisberg Photography
Kate Harrison Photography
Rock The Image
Andre Nguyen Photography
Carlie Statsky Photography
Deborah Tracey Photography
Russ Levi Photography
Jen Philips Photography

Vendor Blog Spotlight: Sound In Motion

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Caitlin was recently interviewed by one of our fabulous DJ teams, Sound In Motion. Their goal is to help future and current clients find a great coordinator by interviewing fabulous coordinators that they know and work with often. We were able to shed some light on what we believe are great attributes for a wedding coordinator to have. We’re excited to share with you our thoughts! Check out the full blog post here.

 

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Jennifer and Kyle

By: Chelsea Hudson

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Jennifer and Kyle’s wedding day was an intimate affair filled with hints of their favorite TV show, Game of Thrones. They got super creative with their details to bring everything together and bring out who they are as a couple and some of the things they love most. They featured margaritas as their specialty cocktail with their own amazing recipe, the bride made custom GOT candle holders for each table, and guests were treated to a candy bar with some of the couple’s favorite candies!

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Congratulations again to the happy couple!

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A special thanks to all of our vendors:

Venue – Hakone Gardens
Catering – Caterman Catering
Photographer – Andre Nguyen Photography
Florist – Sweetness & Light Floral Design
Dessert – Kara’s Cupcakes
Music – Caliber DJs
Hair and Make Up – Xampu
Stationery – New and Blue
Wedding Gown – Maggie Sottero

Ryan and John

By: Chelsea Hudson

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Ryan and John’s Domaine Chandon wedding was inspired by a palette of gold on gold with white accents – and this wedding definitely set the “gold standard”! The day started off with an intimate ceremony where guests filled the chairs that created a circle around the bride and groom. Everyone came together during a special candle ceremony and the flame was passed around the circle, where it reached the groom’s mom and a special candle that was set for the bride’s mom, and ended up at Ryan and John for them to light their candle as a symbol of the beginning of the rest of their lives together.

After the ceremony, the sun began to set and cast a warm glow over the cocktail hour where guests were beginning the celebration. It was important to the couple that their guests felt pampered from beginning to end, especially with delicious food and wine. This led us to a restaurant-inspired dinner reception with a variety of tables while utilizing the space within the venue where guests were wined and dined.

One of our favorite touches was the custom dessert bar with some of Ryan and John’s favorite desserts. Guests indulged in sweet treats along with a photo booth station, busting moves on the dance floor, and a cigar and whiskey bar – complete with custom smoking jackets!

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Congratulations again to the happy couple!

A special thanks to all of our vendors:
Venue – Domaine Chandon
Catering – Elaine Bell Catering
Photographer – Julie Weisberg Photography
Videographer – Steven Bailey Films
Florist – Sweetness & Light Floral Design
Dessert – Honeycomb Desserts + Design
Ceremony Music – Corelli Strings
Reception Music – Caliber DJs
Photobooth – The Laugh Box
Transportation – Pure Luxury
Linens – Napa Valley Linens
Lighting – Magical Lighting
Hair and Make Up – Lux Image Agency
Stationery – Minted
Gown – Marina Morrison
Shoes – Jimmy Choo
Accommodations – Napa Valley Lodge