Real Weddings with Brown Ideas

Groom's Attire


Groom Joshua wears a brown suit, topped off with a lighthearted tie made from vintage fabric. His boutonniere of oak leaves and acorns is tied with a jaunty bow.

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Brown Bridal Bouquet


Bride Fraser's bouquet is a fragrant mix of white majolica roses, Scabiosa, sage, basil, rosemary, and lily of the valley. The bridesmaid bouquets are miniature versions.

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Wedding Party


Bride Suzanne's enjoyment of the combination of chocolate brown and white helped her to develop her color palette. She chose J.Crew bridesmaid dresses and asked the girls to pick from three styles. The groomsmen wore matching ties.

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Stamped Seating Cards


These calligraphed cards, in blue, white, and brown, are rubber-stamped with butterflies (table numbers appear on the reverse side) -- to dress up the pins, glass beads in jewel tones were slipped on and secured with glue.

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Wedding Stationery


These invitations and reply cards are letterpressed with a pinecone motif to reflect the location and season: Oregon in autumn. An illustrated map to the festivities for Maria and Robert's wedding is included.

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These bridesmaids wear chocolate brown Vera Wang dresses and carved rose necklaces given to them by bride, Fraser. They carry smaller versions of Fraser's chocolate bouquet.

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Wedding Programs


A brown monogram of Suzanne and Adam's initials (designed by Suzanne's sister) is incorporated throughout this wedding on details such as the program, cocktail napkin, and dinner menu.

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Bandanna Favors


These tepee favors are made of bandannas (in brown and red) -- inside are instructions for 10 ways to use one.

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Brown and White Table Settings


Suzanne and Adam wanted to have tailored arrangements, so the centerpieces on the dining tables are a mix of high and low pieces. Bells of Ireland, native dogwood branches, and tulips formed the taller pieces, anchored by a trio of simple flower groupings set atop brown tablecloths. Atop each place setting rests a single cut tulip.

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Reception Decorations

The Cedar Room

A garland runs the length of this head table. Votive candles illuminate a canopy of grapevine arbor, which also ties in bride Fraser's color palette, rich brown and white.

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Chocolate Wedding Cake


Two tiers of this cake, by Elizabeth Loudon, were made with bride Jeanette's mother's chocolate cake recipe. Set on a stand trimmed with felt, the confection is covered with bittersweet chocolate frosting and dressed with roses, fiddleheads, and sandersonia.

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Bridal Party Gifts


These handmade woolen sacks in shades of brown hold bridesmaids' and groomsmen's gifts.

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Sketchbook Favors


These sketchbooks in brown, blue, and pink -- complete with ribbon bookmarks -- serve as favors. Their paper bands were decorated with rubber stamps.

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Chocolate and Fruit Wedding Cake


This cake for Jocelyn and Christopher's wedding is covered in semisweet chocolate ganache and candied fruit.

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Pinecone Decorations


Pinecones wired to a tree mark the entrance to Lena and Joshua's wedding site.

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Wedding Centerpiece


Green napkins and a cream and brown custom-made silk dupioni tablecloth complement the centerpiece hues at newlywed couple Fraser and Matthew's reception. For the table number, a tented playing card was used. On the other side was the menu.

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Place Settings


These simple menus, printed with brown ink, displays the three-course menu created by the Menlo Park Circus Club for Suzanne and Adam's wedding. Glass chargers with gold rims are set atop rich chocolate tablecloths.

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Chocolate Wedding Desserts


Instead of one large wedding cake, Maria and Robert offer a number of choices for their guests. The main cake is a square layered tiramisu decorated with Lady apples dipped in either caramel or chocolate. Other baked delights include (from left) a chocolate sour-cream pound cake with raspberry filling and chocolate ganache frosting, miniature cupcakes with apricot filling and topping, and a round layered spice cake with cream-cheese frosting. Hand-painted, calligraphed signs list the names of the desserts.

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Wedding Programs


These wedding programs for Cyndi and Daniel's ceremony are covered in silk and tied with a brown ribbon.

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Groom's Cake


In addition to the traditional wedding cake, Adam has a chocolate cupcake-tower version of a groom's cake; it highlighted his favorite hobbies: skiing, playing softball, and reading books (he's a history teacher).

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Seating Cards


The number of brown and white hearts on these tented playing cards designates table assignments. The guests' names were on the other side.

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Cocktail Napkins


These custom-imprinted cocktail napkins (with Suzanne and Adam's monogram in chocolate) accompany cold drinks such as lemonade. Guests needed the refreshment, as an unexpected heat wave had swept in just prior to the wedding day.

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