Erica & Matt
Erica and Matt’s African Safari Welcome Party
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Erica and Matt’s Wedding Weekend was one of the most grande production of Jackie Ohh… Events history. I was so excited to work with Erica and Matt on their wedding as it was not only so much fun to plan but a true challenge for me as there was an entire weekend filled with events to plan for over 300 guests. The first event was a very private rehearsal dinner that took place on Mr. Cashman’s private yacht. 40 of their closest family and friends enjoyed dinner and cocktails sailing around Miami. The second event was a huge production in itself, Erica wanted to bring her favorite aspects of African Safari to Miami Beach. Erica and Matt love Safari’s so much so that much of their honeymoon was in Africa.
A special thank you to Rodrigo Varela from Rodrigo Varela Photography for these pictures. He was there to capture it all. The pictures tell an amazing story.
We choose Jungle Island for the Welcome Party. What a better venue than an actual park themed Jungle? As the guests arrived, they were greeted by authentic African drummers and were given african necklaces to wear, as if they were arriving at a typical African Party. Each guests was escorted through the park and into the party area located at the far end of the Island. We created a safari feel using AB Cover Designer’s table clothes animal prints together with solid african colors throughout the decor. Rick Interian for Avant Gardens designed the floral decor consisting of imported tropical flowers such as lotus and proteas and each centerepice was different than the next. We used props throughout the party such as walls hand-made of branches, African masks to enhance the feel of being in Africa.
Throughout the party, the African drummers would play to African tribal songs and Dancers did traditional tribal dances. As the guests were watching the shows and enjoying cocktails,stations, and open bars a tribal artist, painted every guests’ face with the white, tribal design as in the typical events in Africa. Jungle Island trainers brought out baby animals for throughout the evening. Kangaroos, Eagles, Alligators, Libers, and Monkeys …Oh MY! A 20 foot outdoor movie screen was in the background with slide shows of all of the pictures of Erica and Matt’s trips together to Africa and details of their safari adventures. When it got dark. fire dancers entertained the guests as they danced the night away to African beats mixed into New Age House music. It was a party, I for one will never forget. It was the perfect taste of the unique, different, and outrageous events to come.
THE BIG DAY!!!!
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Here is the Absolutely Gorgeous Bride, Erica Cashman. Everything she wore was custom made for her, She would have it any other way. Erica loves everything unique and different to her taste and personal style. The bottom of her dress as larger than I could ever explain so much so that I was concerned about her walking throughout the gardens of Vizcaya, but she rocked it! I had a Jackie Ohh… stylist with her al all times to make sure she had everything she needed any second of the day. I miss her so much! Honestly, Erica is a beautiful on the inside as she is on the outside. We used to chat for countless hours and exchange tons of emails a week as we planned the wedding. I am so happy to tell you that she is now a Mommy of two beautiful twin boys. I can’t wait to meet them next time I go to New York.
Meet Mr. and Mrs. Matt and Erica Shevlin. They did their first look at the Biltmore Hotel in Coral Gables. We arranged for every guest to stay for three nights at the hotel the weekend of the wedding. Upon arriving to the hotel, they received a great welcome bag including a 16 page, custom-made booklet giving the, all of the information they could ever want to know about visiting out beautiful city. After, Erica and Matt went to Vizcaya Museum and Gardens (where the reception was being held) for more pictures around the gardens and the grounds of the venue. Once they were finished, Erica as taken to the hotel for Barak Mizrahi to freshen up her hair and make up.
The guests were escorted to the Coral Gables Congregational Church where the ceremony was being held. Karen Cohen and Always Flowers did such an amazing job re-creating a design that Erica and Matt wanted for the ceremony. The guests then were escorted back to the Biltmore Hotel and transportation was provided for all of the guests to Vizcaya Museum and Gardens.
As guests arrived to Vizcaya, trumpets playing regal tunes greeted them. As they walked through the tea room into the venue, women dressed in Marie Antoinette attire roamed the gardens and welcomed the guests. An 8-piece classical orchestra also dressed in regal attire played for the cocktail hour. Erica wanted her guests to feel as if they had entered a royal ball centuries ago; It truly was a Regal Affair. The guests loved it and were taking pictures the entire time.
With every royal affair there must be a royal entrance. Erica and Matt entered the cocktail hour with a Regal Fan-Fair. Perfection!
The main reception took place under a 6,000 square foot clear tent. We used champagne satin table cloths from AB Cover Designers to dress the tables. The chiavari chairs were covered with custom chair sleeves from Wildflower Linen brought in from California. Karen Cohen for Always Flowers designed these beautiful centerpieces consisting of off white and ivory flowers with touches of peach accents. Custom-made fabric fans and ostrich plumes enhanced the centerpieces to give them a regal flair. Always Flowers’ team of over 20 worked diligently to get this design completed in six hours.
Touch Catering and their staff of over 50 people were amazing and the food was delicious! Erica and I had such great dinners at Meat Market in Lincoln Rd. chatting about the details of the menu. Thank you so much to Ana Cristina and David for working so hard with us on this event, it was perfect! We rented gold-rimmed glassware and gold silverware to compliment the over all design. Since Erica and Matt’s invitation were hand designed by an artist in Miami, we used the same design around the menu card that laid under the glass beaded charger at every place setting.
Erica and Matt’s favorite confectioner, George Montilio came down from Boston to design their cake. It was absolutely gorgeous and enormous. It took up the entire table and it was brought in pieces as it was too heavy to pre-assmeble. Erica loved the design and since he was a guest at the wedding he was able to see her enjoy all of the guests loving the taste as well. Dave Walters for All Access made an acrylic stage for us that lit up in different colors throughout the evening. He also provided the sound rider for our Band flown in from New York, The Zoo Band. I have no words to describe how amazing this cover band is. By far, it was the best performance I have seen of a new-age rock band at a wedding. Although the songs were top 40s, they even had the older guests dancing. Erica even started singing with the band, well rapping actually. It was awesome!!!!!!!!!!!!!
By the water, we created a large, after dinner lounge consisting of a coffee station, couches, and the best dessert station ever! The desserts were all candies in white and creams, On the far edges of the table we had a rotating cube filled with mini cubby holes that had slices of cake for the guests to take as they wished. I Loved that little touch of deliciousness. =)
All great things come to an end. The night was over and the newlyweds took a minute to sit by the water and take it all in. It was a long day but they enjoyed every second of it. Other than a little bit of rain at 11pm, the wedding went precisely as planned and it was more than they had ever dreamed it would be.
Erica and Matt’s Wedding was published in Enchanted Brides magazine.
There are so many people to Thank, but my first thank you has to go to Erica and Matt. Thank you so much for entrusting this special weekend in my hands. It was a great experience to have been working with you for the many months of planning and to have met all of your family and friends. Thank you from the bottom of my heart to Rodrigo Varella Photography, Ricki from Artex Productions, Jungle Island, Rick Interian for Avant Gardens, High Performance Designs, DJ Ubi Merrero, Isabelle Melecio and Karen Cohen and Always Flowers, Adrienne Kaiser for Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Ana for AB Cover Designers, The ZOO BAND, Ana Cristina and David for Touch Catering, Barak Mizrahi, Dave Walters for All Access, Panache, Wildflower Linens, ABC Costume Shoppe, Aventura Limo, The Biltmore Hotel, George Montilio, Bubble Miami, Aroma Espresso, Coral Gables Congregation Church, and espcially to the entire Jackie Ohh… Team. It was amazing and I will never forget it.