The Spring 2013 edition of MarthaStewart Weddings has hit the stands and Vintage Ambiance has been “liked”! Or “tagged”! Or at least, can we say “noticed”? . . . as a business that provides Day-Of Wedding Decor in the great state of Washington. And while loan is their word, we RENT some pretty fun, classic, and authentic OLD antique and vintage architecture, lighting, furniture, tables, trunks, props, fancy tableware and more.
“And so with the sunshine and the great bursts of leaves growing on the trees, just as things grow in fast movies, I had that familiar conviction that life was beginning over again with the summer.”
― F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby
This past spring we worked with several wonderful Seattle wedding vendors, including Melody Davis of MG Davis Events, Melanie Benson Floral and Jennifer Tia Photo Artistry to create the laid back lake-shore party style of the Great Gatsby era with a shoot amongst the cherry blossom trees along the shores of Lake Washington. Utterly Engaged, a terrific online wedding magazine, loved it and featured our shoot in their most recent issue, #24. To see how we transformed ourselves back into the days of lace, florals and the graceful house parties of the era visit page 75 at http://www.utterlyengaged.com/category/issues/issue-024/. Enjoy these extra pictures!
Last week, Vintage Ambiance celebrated our first year in business. We would like to this opportunity to reiterate our business goals and plans for the future. A big thank you to all of the wedding and event community in the greater Seattle area for not only simply embracing us, but the friendships that have developed!
Vintage Ambiance is an event rental company that specializes in antique and vintage rentals. We serve the greater Seattle wedding and event community. Our inventory is varied and growing rapidly. We have wonderful antique and vintage rentals for weddings, stylized shoots, and corporate events. Our inventory includes: architectural elements; vintage upholstered furniture; vintage vases; silverplate; farm tables; etc.
This past year, we have been inundated with requests to rent vintage farm tables and upholstered couches and upholstered chairs We are hot on the trail for all of these. Currently, several vintage farm tables are being constructed from old table legs and planking from 100 year old beams. Furniture from 1920 t0 1940 are being reupholstered.
For those of you that are not aware, Vintage Ambiance has storage near downtown Bellevue, Washington. We encourage visitors, including planners, brides, photographers, and florists to come see our inventory. It is hard to keep up with the website, so there are treasures in storage that are new and exciting. Please contact us with your ideas, visions, and requests. We truly love the rich history that can be found in older pieces. And no, we don’t believe that vintage ‘is a trend’ but rather that vintage elements provide a sense of family, history, and intimacy regardless of your style or venue.
I don’t know much about photography other than to point, shoot, and hope for the best. Perhaps that’s why I was so taken with the photographs that Brenda and Chris shared with me of their November wedding. I feel as if I’ve walked back in time, with the lovely sepia quality to them. While our rusty iron gates are more typically used as a background prop, their placement in the forefront adds elements of grandeur and mystery. If only they had been wearing the attire of the early 1800′s French Court. Sigh. . . .
I also love the symbolism of their clasped hands near our 1839 Bible opened to Proverbs 25 and its wisdom concerning the avoidance of quarrels. I think it’s hilarious however, that the 24th verse reads “It is better to live in a corner of the roof, than in a house shared with a contentious woman.” Not typically a scripture that is thought of on one’s wedding day! Thank goodness Vintage Ambiance rents the props rather than writes the scripts!
The past couple of weeks, I have been inundated with inquiries regarding the availability of 1920′s furniture and props for rent. Seems to me like there is a whole lot of creativity going on, from event themes involving silent movies and luxury ocean travel, to brides wanting to create the old world glam of Great Gatsby, the mystery of the speakeasy and prohibition, and the design wonders of Art Deco. I say Yes, Yes, and Yes! I love this period of our history with it’s lavish interiors and angular designs. . . cloche hats and flapper dresses. . . . the poetic genius of F. Scott Fitzgerald and Ernest Hemingway. . . and the birth of jazz. Throw in a gangster or two and it’s instant drama.
Vintage Ambiance offers vintage rentals to the greater Seattle community. We have a variety of furniture and props from the 1920′s and 30′s. I recently purchased two more great art deco chairs that are in the shop for a makeover. They will be gorgeous so watch for their photos. Our growing collection of travel trunks from this era are always in high demand. I’d love to find some Charleston music that our hand-cranked Victrola can spin out. Sorry, we are fresh out of tommie-guns!
I laughed long and hard after watching Wedding Channels U Tube tribute to Bridal chatter. “I want vintage chic. Like vintage classic but a little more modern. Vintage chic, you know, urban chic with a like rustic twist.” I love this! It makes it sound as if wedding decor can be ordered through a drive-through! But putting humor aside, the reality is that these phrases perfectly describe the multiple meanings that underlie the vintage wedding vogue. What exactly is meant by vintage chic? Or vintage rustic? Or any of the other phrases that are being bantered about? All I know is that what seems to be at the core is a yearning for a feeling of family. . . of familiarity. . . of intimacy. . . of more simple times. Incorporating vintage pieces into a wedding can and do fulfill all of these basic human longings. The best part is that vintage elements can support any design theme, whether it be romantic, trendy, sophisticated, or. . . a rustic twist.
Whatever ‘kind’ of vintage you want, or whatever ‘meanings’ you use to describe it, if it’s vintage you want, it’s vintage we have! Vintage Ambiance provides vintage rentals to the greater Seattle area.
I haven’t been this excited since. . . . well, I’m not sure that I’ve ever been this excited!!! The hard work essential to creating and developing a new business is starting to pay off. Last April, Vintage Ambiance was launched as a purveyor of antique and vintage architecture, furniture, and props available for rent to the greater Seattle community. So far, our inventory has grown to include not only a large variety of styles, but historical periods as well. To date, our wonderful rental pieces have been involved in a proposal, weddings, a corporate party, a charity event, several stylistic shoots, wedding shows, and vendor open houses. Whew!
But the crazy ‘good feel’ of this past weekend surpassed even the birth of my 6 children (sorry kids, the memories fade after 20 plus years), with the handout of the Winter 2012 issue of Seattle Metropolitan Bride and Groom issue at the Seattle Wedding Show. Our beautiful table service pieces consisting of crystal glassware, cake plates, Limoges china, silver-plate cutlery, linens, etc, etc, etc… were featured in not one, but TWO very stylish and exciting photo layouts. Our inclusion was made possible by the always delightful Annette of Luxe Wedding Design, and everyone’s best friend, Sheena of The Invisible Hostess.
Peely Paint Church Pews
Large 1930′s Hooked Area Rug
Tall Silver Plate Candelabras
Mid-Century Upholstered Couch and Chairs
Funky Old Cash Register
Long Farm Tables
1950′s Bubble Bud Vases
A Box Truck To Cart It All Around
I wish all of Vintage Ambiance’s friends and colleagues great joy this holiday season. Hope we have more opportunities to work together this coming year!
At this time of year when hosting and toasting is, quite simply, part of our holiday experience, I would like to raise a glass in memory to my late Aunt Virgina. She sure knew how to throw a party! Whether our gatherings were a result of a formal holiday, a casual “how are ya”, or a cause for celebration, Virginia was the catalyst for pulling family and friends together. Sometimes the occasion called for the royal treatment, and out came the gorgeous hand-painted china, sterling flatware and polished candelabras. One of my favorite childhood memories is the individual mint cups full of creamy, pastel, butter mints. Birthdays, graduations, and showers were typically celebrated more casually. . . pot-luck style. Wherever the location, inside or outside, Virginia always made sure that tablecloths were present, candles were lit, and delicious food filled the table. Kentucky Friend Chicken was never served in a cardboard bucket, nor was Ketchup served in it’s bottle. It simply wasn’t considered ‘good form’. There were bowls, platters, and serving pieces for each and every dish. Invitations and place cards were created from salvaged ephemera, and Virgina also made sure to include centerpieces and decorations that reflected the occasion. Ambiance was as essential as great food and glass clinking!
I think often about Virginia and her well dressed tables, as I am searching for items to add to Vintage Ambiance‘s rental inventory. One of our biggest challenges is how to set a stylish table using timeless vintage pieces for an event (upper photograph by JayLee Photography). . . . especially a large wedding. We have simple 1870′s porcelain French Limoges china, Wallace silver plate deco style flatware and a menagerie of beautiful crystal wine glasses, champagne coups, and appertifs. There is not nearly enough for numerous tables, but plenty for a host table, bridal table, or rehearsal dinner. Think of the photo opportunity! On a less formal note, we’ve acquired a great collection of late 1800′s white English Ironstone bowls, pitchers, and platters. These are classic, earthenware dishes that bring a natural, uncluttered feel to a table as they showcase the colors and textures of the food served. We’ve been a bit more hesitant with vintage linens (they can be delicate) but our inventory includes a variety of white linen luncheon cloths (typically a 30 x 30 inch square) that contrast beautifully with larger colored tablecloths. And yes, we also enjoy being creative with salvaged objects. My favorite card/photo holders have been made out of old wooden shoe forms, and glass door knobs.
So thank you Aunt Virginia, for the fabulous memories of parties with family and friends. I toast your creativity and the time you took to make each event memorable. Salute!
Last week I bought this very yummy 1040′s sofa that has great curved lines and a bit of a heart shape to the back. (Appropriate for weddings don’t you think?) The strangest thing though, is that this sofa is like a chameleon. Every time you look at it, it seems to be a different color. The person that assisted me in the purchase said, “If I wasn’t so done with my pink stage, I would love to have this couch!” Pink?? I’m thinking the color is like baked pumpkin pie. I get the sofa home, still chuckling at the idea of it being pink, and my neighbor comments that “It’s a bit mauvish, isn’t it?” Mauvish? Fortunately, my color sense gets a bit of a reprieve when my husband decides the sofa is more burnt orange. At least we are now in the same section of the color wheel! I take a cushion to match for trim, and find myself asking the fabric cutter what color she thinks it is? “Sienna.” The employee next to her says, “Salmon.” (Uh, oh. We’re inching back towards pink.) The customer behind me pipes up and declares it brown apricot. Brown apricot? Like in rotten fruit? At least we all agree what color it’s not. Blue!
The truth is, that this sofa changes color depending upon light, and surrounding. Definitely an outstanding feature for a vintage rental piece, as it can compliment a wide variety of color schemes, and be perfect for any season. The use of upholstered pieces always add a warm, intimate and comfortable dimension to your special event. Vintage Ambiance continues to add great upholstered sofas and chairs to our outstanding rental inventory.