By Rhiannon L. D’Angelo | May 15, 2012
Something new is happening to the wedding business these days. Some bold New Englanders are resisting the tried and true matrimonial customs and blazing their own blissful trails to the altar instead.
For help, these couples often turn to Rachael Gross, owner of Boston-based lolagraceEVENTS, which specializes in “ANTI-BRIDE” weddings, fashion performances, and special events.
Forget the stereotype of stuffy blueblood New Englanders, Gross’s clients tend to be snappy, stylish, and more than a little quirky. Cookie cutter brides need not apply.
So what is an ANTI-BRIDE? First of all, they are not anti-wedding—in fact they’re very excited about it. “The ANTI-BRIDE encompasses everything tradition sometimes neglects,” Gross says. “Maybe throwing a wicked party is more important than throwing her bouquet.”
Recently she planned a fête for an engaged Boston couple who didn’t want just a wedding, but a chic nightclub-style soirée. At lolagraceEVENTS, ask and you shall receive.
After exchanging vows at the Winter Garden at Seaport Place, guests headed to the Artists for Humanity EpiCenter located on Fort Point Channel to dance the night away.
By day, the immense loft exists to bring the arts to underserved children in the Boston area and also happens to be the city’s “greenest” event venue, being awarded an “LEED Platinum” status by the U.S. Green Council. The total rental fee also goes to support a non-profit art apprenticeship program that gives inner city youth a voice, a vision, and a job.
Dinner for the party was brought in from a chi-chi French restaurant downtown and to aid digestion and dancing, Gross booked DJ Chris Roxx—one of Boston’s hottest club DJs, to drop beats from the balcony while their guests blew the lid off the loft in a wash of pink light over a monogrammed dance floor.
The newly married couple made quite the grand entrance through the main garage door, while a bagpiper played alongside them!
When the guests needed a break from shaking their moneymakers, they were invited to graze on old-fashioned candy bar reminiscent of a scene from Willy Wonka, or they could light up cigars in the outside lounge.
And since nothing tastes as good as some street meat after a night on the town–a sausage cart worthy of Fenway Park was rolled into the venue.
Location, Location, Location
Gross believes the Northeast has it all when it comes to locations. “Being a wedding planner in New England affords me the luxury of playing with a wide variety of backdrops, moods, color palettes, and themes,” she adds. “Each season sets a new backdrop; each location provides new inspiration for a unique and individual wedding. It’s like being able to play with every crayon in the box.”
Mystic, Connecticut stood in for French Provence at one wedding in October 2010, when one couple requested nuptials that combined the beauty of the rustic French countryside with classic regional motifs. Gross’s skillful blending of the two created a perfect harmony. Wild flowers, pears, and wine added just the right amount of European flair to a gorgeous New England autumn day. A vintage cake topper doubled as the bride’s “something old,” while old-fashioned photographs of the bride’s and groom’s families decorated the interior of the Inn at Mystic added to the Brahmin theme.
Gross’s clients continue to challenge her and this year’s wedding season is already in full swing. lolagraceEVENTS is currently putting together an eco-friendly, “mod”-themed wedding for summer 2011. The deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum in nearby Lincoln will serve as the venue and the anti-bride and groom hope to take full advantage. I don’t know about you, but I wouldn’t mind being on the guest list.
535 Albany Street, Suite 200, Boston, MA 02118