17 Steal-Worthy Wedding Ideas From Engage13!

Just last week, we had the opportunity to attend a luxury weddings summit, called Engage, for some of the most elite wedding planners and pros in the industry. We’re talking about celebrity wedding planners and designers including Marcy Blum, Sylvia Weinstock, Tara Guerard and Matthew Robbins. The best part? When you throw a conference for a couple hundred wedding planners and pros, the party and the details are bound to be seriously inspiring. Below, all of the wedding-worthy details from our week in Scottsdale, Arizona at the Montelucia Resort & Spa. Take a look and steal some of these as inspiration for your own wedding!

1) Greet Guests with Wow-Worthy Welcome Bags

Welcome bags aren’t a new idea, but personalizing them with your wedding colors and creating separate bags for men and women is.

2) Brand & Initial Everything

Use your logo or initials on everything, from the catering tray to water bottles to even your reception dance floor for big visual impact.

3) Create Unique Food Displays

Instead of a typical vegetable tray, these hors d’oeuvres took on more of a natural look.

4)  Turn Your Favorite Food Into A Food Bar (Anything Goes!)

From the top: There was a bacon bar, a sticky buns bar, a popcorn bar, and a trail mix bar!

5) Re-Think Your Escort Card Display 

Set the stage for the reception before guests even enter the room. Here, a wall covered in fresh white hydrangeas created a luxe backdrop for mini paper lantern escort cards. Each lantern (from Gifts for the Good Life) was lit up with a small battery-operated light and our names and table numbers were calligraphed on the outside.

6) Low and Lush Centerpieces In Any Color 

Lower centerpieces aren’t just beautiful — they’re also practical. They encourage conversation (instead of blocking it)!

7) Hanging Flowers And Birds

Amidst the low centerpieces, Todd Events also created these elaborate hanging floral installations. To really create that indoor garden feel, the team added hanging faux yellow hummingbirds.

8) Highlight The Stage

If the priority is dancing, then give the band a place to really shine. Bonus: When the stage is elevated above the dance floor it allows even the non-dancing guests a view of the band.

9) Create A Dessert Garden

Each sweet in this bar took on the shape of a beautiful flower, taking it way beyond the typical dessert bar.

10) Menu-Printed Dinner Napkins

You can print just about anything on napkins, including your menu! Add your monogram or logo, and think of a way to creatively display them. Ours were tucked into cute purple pots to complement the garden themed gala.

11) Let Your Surroundings Inspire Your Colors

The event took place in Arizona, so it was only fitting that we eat our lunch under bright, sunny orange and yellow tents. The Moroccan-style tents also shaded us from direct sunlight and created a nice ambience around the tables.

12) Remember the Cocktail Hour Tables

The centerpieces don’t need to be elaborate for the cocktail tables, but something simple and romantic can add character to a cocktail hour.

13) Use Bird Cages

Two separate parties had decorated birdcages – you can use them to decorate with flowers or hang over chandeliers. Either way they are a chic and fun way to add a wow-factor to your wedding.

14) Print The Signature Cocktail Recipe Onto Paper Napkins

What better way to let guests know what’s in your signature cocktail than printing it out?

15) Hire Entertainment Groups

When it was time for the 22-piece orchestra to take a break, a Boys II Men-inspired dance group jumped up on stage and surprised everyone with an amazing act. Adding an extra act ensures the party never loses its momentum.

16) Get Creative With Your Lighting (Like A Star-Lit Backdrop)

As the party heated up, the lighting changed too. Tiny twinkle stars lit up the stage while the blue up-lighting created a party atmosphere.

17) Give Guests A Fun Activity (Like This Edible Marker Cookie Bar) 

Have a station set up for the kids to play and eat cookies like these from Elenis. Or, order thank-you cookies to send with guests on their way out the door. A super cute way to thank guests is to write your thank-you notes on edible cookies like these from Elenis.

And just like at a wedding, when the party is over and all the guests have gone home, you’re left with photos and video. The team from I Do Films captured the last two days beautifully in this inspirational video.

Overall Event Partners

Graphic Design: Trisha Hay Design  | Design & Decor: Todd Events | Event Branding, Accessories & Branded Gifting: Gifts for the Good Life | Furniture Rental: Suite 206 | Branded Specialty Pieces: Arak Kanofsky Sudios | Event Calligraphy & Hand Lettering: Deborah Nadel Design | Event Entertainment: West Coast Music | Professional Sound for Entertainment: Design Sound | Letterpress & Printing: Two Paperdolls | All Event Linen: La Tavola | Custom Stage & Gala Draping : Dazian Creative Fabric Environments | Tenting & cornices: Raj Tents | Audio Visual: PSAV For Montelucia Resort & Spa | Transportation: Uber | Engage13 Website: Flosites | Official Photographers: Elan Artists, Chellise Michael Photography, Scott Clark Photography | Official Videographer: I Do Films |Slo Motion Video Booth & Event Highlight Film: Elysium ProductionsPhoto Sharing: Capsule | Hair & Makeup Stylists: Shawn Leech, Tara Dowburd, Joya Spa at the Montelucia | Attendee Book: Guesterly | Speaker & Team Travel: The Travel Siblings

Registration, Opening Sessions  & Welcome Party Partners:

Registration Design & Decor: Todd Events | Registration Furniture: Suite 206 | Registration Florals: Butterfly Petals | Hand Painted Itineraries: Momental Designs | Draping: Dazian Creative Fabric Environments | Cornice: Raj Tents | Opening Session Stage Furniture: Hire Elegance | Florals: Angelic Grove |Design & Decor: Encore Creative | Entertainment: West Coast Music | Sound: Design Sound | Linen: La Tavola Fine Linen | Rental Chairs: Classic Party Rental | Event Accessories: Gifts for the Good Life | Slo Mo Video Booth: Elysium Productions

Day 2 Breakfast, General Sessions, Luncheon on the Lawn Partners:

Floral: The Flower Studio | Linen: La Tavola Fine Linen | Lucite Flex Chairs: Kool Party Rentals | Stage Design & Decor: Todd Events | Furniture & Screens: Suite 206 | Milano Italian Chairs: Hire Elegance | Floral: Lux Florist |Hello Inspiration & Organization Gifts: Gifts for The Good Life | Custom Presentation Boxes: Taylor’d Favors | Tenting: Raj Tents | Hand painted Menus & Keepsake Gifts: Momental Designs | Floral: Table Tops Ect | Fruit wood Chairs: Event Rents 

Dine Around Location & Dessert Party Partners

Cameo Location | Catering: Fabulous Food Fine Catering & Events | Floral: Flora Bella | Linen, Chairs & Rentals: Event Rents | Menus: Vee Creative | Restoration Hardware Location: Catering: Fabulous Food Fine Catering & Events | Florals: Butterfly Petals | Linen: La Tavola Fine Linen | Fruitwood Chairs: Classic Party Rentals | Florals: Butterfly Petals | Entertainment: West Coast Music | Professional Sound for Entertainment: Design Sound |Linen: La Tavola Fine Linen | Sparking Wine: XXIV Carat

Day 3 Breakfast, Break & Lunch, Gifting Lounge & Styling Suite

Tenting: Raj Tents | Floral: Blume Events, Wild Child Floral Design | Linen: La Tavola Fine Linen | Chairs & Rentals: Event Rents | Decor: Minted | Decor Styling: The Tom Kat Studio | Lucite Flex Chairs: Kool Party Rentals | Linen: La Tavola Fine Linen | Lunch Box: Gifts for the Good Life | Minted | Vera Wang | Kendra Scott Jewelry | Tieks | Plum Pretty Sugar | Elenis | Design & Decor: Todd Events | Furniture: Suite 206 | Registration Florals: Butterfly Petals | The Stylish Bride with items from Badgley Mischka | Haute Vault | TejaniMeredith MarksFranchi | Erickson BeamonThomas Laine

The Gala

Event Design, Decor & Florals: Todd Events | Custom Furniture: Studio 206 | Artisan Cocktail & Bar Service: The Grand Bevy | Entertainment: West Coast Music | Professional Sound for Entertainment: Design Sound | Custom Dance Floor: Platinum Pro Inc | Charger Plate Design: Arak Kanofsky Sudios | Event Calligraphy & Hand Lettering: Deborah Nadel Design | Custom Stage & Gala Draping : Dazian Creative Fabric Environments | Tenting: Raj Tents | Linen: La Tavola Fine Linen | Highlight Film: Elysium Productions | Photo Booth: The Hip Booth | Photo Booth Props: Todd Events | Audio Visual & Lighting: PSAV | Brazilian Sweet Table: Micheline Etkin | Chairs: Event Rents | ResqWater | Local Floral Support for Todd Events: Mayesh Wholesale Floral, Inc. | Gala Escort Card Wall and Custom Birdcage Lanterns: Arak Kanofsky Studios | Escort Cards & Menu Napkins: Gifts for the Good Life

Want more?

> 30 Ways To Wow Your Guests

> 25 steal-worthy wedding ideas from the last Engage in June!

> Check out our luxe list for more tips & ideas

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Escort cards are extremely easy to personalize and an excellent way to bring in your wedding day colors -- from calligraphed seating cards set atop a textured linen to apples tagged with each guest's name or small personalized bundles of lavender tied off with string. Other ways to display escort cards: Pin them to a clothesline, post them on a board covered in color-coordinated ribbon, or incorporate them into your cocktail hour using personalized stirrers tagged with guests' names.
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