Category: Reception

The Smokeasy Mobile Cigar Lounge

Reception Tip & Ideas Vendors

The Smokeasy Mobile Cigar Lounge

A mobile cigar lounge will surely set your wedding apart from the rest and have your guests talking about it. Contact The Smokeasy Mobile Cigar Lounge here in Portland to find out everything you need to know about adding this unique and celebratory element to your wedding reception.  We asked local owner, Jeremy Schram, a few questions. Check it out below!

Where are you originally from? And how long have you been in Portland?

I was born and raised in Portland, Oregon. My wife/business partner is originally from the Northeast of Scotland where we like to go visit her family as often as possible.

What is your favorite thing (or things) about Portland?

One of my favorite things about Portland is its proximity to the mountain and the coast. We spend as much free time as we can camping up on Mount Hood. A close second would have to be the people. I’ve been around the world and around the US and the people in Portland are some of the most down-to-earth, friendly people around.

How long have you been working as a wedding professional?

We have been throwing cigar related parties for many years and loved it so much we decided to start a business out of it. So, while this is our first official year of business, it’s by no means our first year in the event world!

You own a unique business! Please briefly explain what you do/offer.

The Smokeasy is a mobile cigar lounge that can be customized for any event. We bring out the cigars along with the entire lounge. We’ll setup leather scroll arm chairs, tables, ash trays, cutters, lighters, etc. We also stay for the event to help guests pick the right cigar for their taste profile, cut and light their cigar as well as to answer any questions about what they are smoking.

In addition, we also offer a covered space with lighting, walls and heat (if necessary). We can also provide custom labels for cigars that can include initials, a special date or artwork. For a special touch, we can also offer cigars in tubes that match the event colors.

In what ways does your CiGAR business enhance a couple’s wedding day?

Cigars are synonymous with celebration and they’re also one of the great luxuries in life, so cigars and weddings just go together! On top of that, we find that cigars truly bring people together; they encourage people to sit, relax and have conversations with each other. Weddings can be awesomely frenetic balls of excited energy and it’s nice to have a contrast available for guests — a space where guests and hosts alike can spend a little time enjoying fine tobacco in the company of their friends and family.  This is what draws so many people to enjoy them. 

What people/training/experiences/opportunities led you to this career path?

I studied business/marketing in college and part of me always knew that I would run my own business some day. Out of college I had the opportunity to make a good living in IT so I joined a company here in Portland where I worked for several years, but the longer I sat behind a desk the more I realized that I had no passion for the job I was doing.  My wife recognized that I wasn’t happy in IT and asked me what I really wanted to do and the answer was obvious! I had been smoking pipes and cigars since just about the day I turned 18 and we’d been throwing increasingly elaborate parties for friends and family. I told her that if I could do anything, it would be to combine my passion for tobacco and entertaining. I have to give all the credit to her when it comes to the idea for the business and helping me bring it to life.

What is the best part Running a Cigar Lounge?

My favorite part is definitely the day of the event. The look on peoples’ faces when I help then choose a cigar is like a kid in a candy store. And then there’s that sweet spot when the lounge is full and I get to see people connecting and reconnecting over this shared experience of smoking a cigar. It’s a real feel-good moment, every time.

What do you find most challenging about your specific line of work or weddings in general?

We only do one event a day, so we have to turn down people when dates fill up. While we could technically do multiple events if the times worked out, we believe that it’s important to focus on one couple at a time. For weddings especially, this is really special day for the hosts and we don’t want them to stress about whether a vendor will show up on time. We wish we could be at every wedding but we want to focus our attention on one client at a time.

Do you work solo or do you have a team?

Unless we have an event with over 500 people, I typically work the event alone (after my wife gives me a bit of help setting up).

What do you attribute to your success as a wedding vendor?

We understand that couples are really looking to impress their guests and throw the sort of party that people won’t forget. This drive to delight guests is what makes us successful. People get so excited when we help them plan their event and that excitement definitely continues through the event. 

At what point in the wedding planning process should clients hire you?

If we were to get married (to each other) again, we would book the cigar lounge, then find a venue, then get the dress… but we’re strange like that! In all seriousness, clients should get in touch with us once they have their venue in mind. That way, we can work with the venue to ensure that they can accommodate us. There are some regulations around smoking, but for the most part any venue with outdoor space can accommodate a cigar lounge.

Where do you draw inspiration? Are there any current trends you are excited about?

I find that most of my inspiration comes from my wife. She works so hard and inspires me in what I do. In addition to her, I get a lot of my inspiration from the cigars I smoke.  I am constantly trying new cigars. There are a lot of people who find that one cigar they love and will smoke them forever. I am not one of those people. I do have a few favorites, but I find more joy in trying new cigars and then sharing the great ones with others. I have clients who request certain cigars, but I love it when they give me full reign to choose a selection for their guests. I have yet to disappoint. Product testing is a lot of fun too!

What is the most important thing that couples should ask someone in your profession before hiring them?

Couples should ask how are the cigars stored before and during the event? Cigars are very sensitive to temperature and humidity — too much or too little of either can make a cigar very unpleasant to smoke, which is the very opposite to what you want your guests to experience. We have a commercial-grade walk-in humidor on our premises, and we bring custom humidors to the event to ensure that the cigars are always at their peak condition when they’re smoked. Sadly, we’ve seen so many “home-made” cigar bars where someone will buy a box of cigars before the wedding, and they’ll sit in someone’s closet for a week before being set out in the sun for hours before the reception even starts. By the time the guests pick out a cigar, they’re as dry as a bone and taste like sawdust. It brings a tear to my eye…

What is your best advice for wedding clients?

RELAX! And the best way to do that is to hire people to do the hard stuff. When we got married, we tried to do it all by ourselves.  We quickly realized that it was worth saving our sanity to hire the right people to do the jobs that seemed so simple in the beginning.

Anything else you’d like couples to know about you?

When all the planning is done and the big day has arrived, the stress over the little things will go away. We do a lot of planning to ensure that every event goes off without a hitch. Our products are always top quality and we enjoy helping those who have never smoked a cigar light up their very first one.

Thanks Jeremy!

Do you want us to feature your local Portland wedding business? Contact us at info@artofweddingspdx!

Rooftop Wedding in Portland Oregon

Ceremony Couples Inspiration Real Weddings Reception

Rooftop Wedding in Portland Oregon

This classy and intimate rooftop wedding is the summer event we all hope to be invited to! One of the best things about living in Portland, is this city’s beauty. The Desoto Rooftop Terrace is the perfect location to highlight the beauty of our city, and treat your guests to a night they won’t soon forget.
Local Portland wedding photographer Brittany Lauren did a fantastic job capturing the musical vibe and floral details of this dreamy urban affair. The dress and bouquet, alone, make us swoon.
In Brittany’s words, “Sarah and Alex were married in downtown Portland on the DeSoto Rooftop Terrace. Their wedding was elegant and intimate. Sarah looked stunning in her form fitting gown and Jordan from Blum  Floral Design did an amazing job transforming the space with her beautiful floral creations. Sarah and Alex are both professional musicians for the symphony down in Texas and it was important to them that they have quality music. They trusted Dan Balmer Quartet to deliver and they 100% did! They provided the perfect soft music for the ceremony and kicked it up during the reception while everyone was dancing.” Check out these gorgeous images captured by Brittany Lauren Photography. And see a list of all vendors below.
A few of our favorite details about this stunning wedding are the colors and textures Blum used in the bouquets. It really gave the floral styling a lush, modern vibe, perfect for this urban affair. We are also so in love with the ruffles that accent the back of this dress. Such a unique (and stunning) detail.
Wedding Coordinator: Blush Bridal
Florist: Jordan Gladow of Blum Floral Design
Cake: Helen Bernhard Bakery
Do you have a real Portland wedding you’d like to see featured on our blog? Contact us at info@artofweddingspdx.com!
Gorgeous Multi-Cultural Wedding

Ceremony Couples Inspiration Reception Vendors

Gorgeous Multi-Cultural Wedding

Wow! We are so excited to share Chemi and Casey’s wedding with you. From their coordinator: “Their gorgeous multi-cultural wedding celebration was designed to blend American and Tibetan traditions. Their day began with an intimate morning ceremony in a historic setting with beautiful garden photos. The bride and groom had a full change of attire. Luxurious fabric donned the bride and groom for round 2 of their 3 attire changes for the day. The traditional Tibetan Scarf Ceremony kicked off the evening event with 400 guests who enjoyed authentic cuisine, music and performances. The evening concluded with a 3rd attire change, a DJ and dancing into the wee hours of the evening!”

This stunning wedding was a huge success due to some incredible Portland Wedding Vendors:
Planning and Coordination: Soleil Bliss Event Productions
Photography: Aniko Productions
Part 1
Ceremony (& Reception)Music: John Ross Music (Michael Blake artist)
Suit: Men’s Wearhouse
Part 2:
Rentals: Elegant Wedding Chair Covers
Rentals: Barclays
Photo Booth: Happymatic
Many thanks for sharing this incredible wedding with us. Chemi and Casey, we send our heartfelt congratulations and best wishes for a wonderful life together!
Perks of a Non-Saturday Wedding!

Ceremony Reception Tip & Ideas Vendors

Perks of a Non-Saturday Wedding!

We all know the most popular day of the week for a wedding is Saturday. But for couples that are flexible and open to the idea of planning their wedding on a  different day of the week…the perks can be huge!

Saving tons of money!

This is the number one reason to consider a non-Saturday wedding day. If budget is a concern, then listen up. Your dream venue will likely have lower rates for off season months. And there is a good chance they also offer lower rates for Friday, Sunday, and weekday weddings…even in the summer or most popular times of the year.

Every venue will vary, but you can potentially save hundreds (and sometimes thousands) of dollars on your venue rental rate just by picking a different day of the week. The Foundry in Lake Oswego and The West End Ballroom in downtown Portland are both great examples of this!

The number one reason couples feel like they have to book a Saturday date is convenience for their guests. Especially out of town guests. The fear is that friends and family will have to take too much time off of work otherwise. Well, consider this. If you have your wedding on a Saturday, your traveling guests will likely take Friday off. If you have your wedding on a Sunday, on the other hand, they could work Friday…and take Monday off instead. Either scenario has them only missing ONE day of work. Which shouldn’t be a problem because they are giving their bosses a year or more notice. It’s actually not all that complicated for them and you can potentially save tons of money.

Some out of town guests (who have never been to Portland before) might also love to use your wedding as an excuse to plan a mini-vacation! They may plan to come for several days and explore. In that case, your wedding day could be any day of the week and they will just plan accordingly.

Availability! More choices!

The venue you have had your eye on could easily already be booked for every Saturday next August and maybe even two years out. Summer Saturdays are going to be the first to go! And some couples are on the venue hunt a year or two out. If you are flexible on days, however, you will have a lot more choices when it comes to venues! And the venue is one of the most important decisions you will make. It sets the tone and stage for almost everything else. Your dream venue may already be booked on that Saturday you thought you wanted…but on that very same weekend they might have the Friday or Sunday open…for considerably less money.

It’s all about you!

Some gorgeous venues have multiple areas, ballrooms, grounds…and can host more than one wedding on any given day. The Abernethy Center and McMenamin’s Edgefield for instance. You can almost guarantee they will be booking multiple nuptials on the most popular days. Yep, you guessed it. Saturdays! If you are in love with the venue, but not the idea of running into other couples and celebrations on your day…consider choosing a less sought after day! While these venues are popular for a reason and do a great job hosting more than one wedding on the same day, you might find you have more options if you choose a different day of the week.

Saving even more money!

While it’s true that most venues will offer lower rates for off season and non-Saturday weddings…the same holds true for many other vendors. It’s always a good idea to ask other wedding professionals (caterers, florists, photographers, etc) if they offer different rates for weddings held on different days of the week.

Something different!

Consider doing a Friday night wedding that has more of a cocktail party vibe…just make sure you pick a venue where you can keep the party and music going until midnight or later. You could rent lounge type furniture and decor from one of the many local rental companies like Barclay Events or West Coast Event Productions. Or perhaps think about a Sunday Brunch wedding. Everyone loves brunch food! And many of the caterers in town, like Cheryl’s on 12th & As Good As It Gets Catering, can hit this out of the park for you. Having a Bloody Mary Bar is always a hit. There are many ways to make your wedding unique and memorable to your guests! Don’t be afraid to do something different…especially if it will work better for your budget.

Less is more!

If you choose a non-Saturday wedding date it may, in fact, be the perfect way to naturally weed out some of the guests that you are not that close to anyway…the ones that you felt you had to invite.  Your loved ones, closest family and friends, will be at your wedding no matter what day you choose! Perhaps a few others, however, will not be able to make it. Just remember that when your guest count goes down…so does your catering costs!

At the end of the day…this wedding is supposed to be a magical day for you. And if you are worried about your budget…a non-Saturday is a fantastic place to start majorly cutting costs. If you give your guests plenty of notice as far as the wedding date, they will happily figure out the logistics of being there. Just like you would for their wedding. Definitely pick the day that is best for you!

Photo credit: Jessica Hill Photography

Real Oregon Wedding: Brittany and Doug at Castaway

Ceremony Couples Inspiration Reception Vendors

Real Oregon Wedding: Brittany and Doug at Castaway

Brittany and Doug were married at the gorgeous Castaway Portland. While they had a few rain drops on their wedding day, you would have never known it by the brightness of their smiles and their infectious happiness. It was a beautiful day and every detail came together beautifully.

I love the personal details they included in their reception, including the use of Doug’s family plaid. It was the perfect Spring wedding!

We have included a complete list of vendors at the bottom of the page for your reference. All were incredible to work with!

 

 

Vendors

Instant Adventure Photo-booth

Reception Vendors

Instant Adventure Photo-booth

Are you interested in having a photo-booth at your wedding? Well we have found a great booth for you to use. Meet Kenneth Poirier, owner of Instant Adventure Photo-booth. We love how easy going and flexible Instant Adventure is to work with, and their pricing makes them a no-brainer. If you are interested in adding a photo-booth to your wedding check out Instant Adventure!

AOW: Where are you originally from? And how long have you been in Portland?

One of the lucky few to be originally from Portland.

AOW: What is your favorite thing about Portland?

Portland has everything you could want from a big city, but still has the small town feel.

AOW: What is your favorite spot or thing to do in Portland?

During the NBA season there is a great chance you will find me at a Blazer game. Rip City Baby!

AOW: How long have you been working as a wedding professional?

I have been in the industry for over 10 years, but the photobooth is fairly new. I am always looking for fun ways to stay involved in this great industry.

AOW: What is the best part of your job?

I love seeing the pictures after the event. People really have a great time in our booth and it shows!

AOW: What do you attribute to your success as a wedding vendor? What do you think makes you stand apart from others in your field?

We got into business wanting to simplify photo-booth rentals for local couples. We wanted to make the rental affordable, and we also wanted to allow for shorter rental periods. You can rent a booth from us for the entire event, or two hours. We try to be as accommodating as possible.

AOW: At what point in the wedding planning process should clients hire you?

It’s a misconception that you can wait to book a photo-booth. We get booked up to a year in advance and it is always sad to have to turn down awesome couples. If you know you want a photo-booth at your event, contact as soon as possible

AOW: Where do you draw inspiration? Are there any current trends you are excited about?

One of the things we started doing recently was creating a video of the best images from the night. Its a fun way to share the highlights with your friends and family on social media.

Dave & Jen – 11.20.16 HD from Instant Adventure on Vimeo.

AOW: What is the most important thing that couples should ask before they choose a photo-booth?

I encourage couples to talk to the photo-booth owner about their equipment. You want to make sure it is reliable and that the photos will be clear and crisp.

AOW: What is your best advice for wedding clients?

Photo-booths give your guests a fun and exciting souvenirs from your wedding day. Its not only a fun, interactive way to participate in your wedding, but it also is a terrific keepsake. Remember, a wedding isn’t a spectator sport.

AOW: Anything else you’d like couples to know about you?

When I am not working on weddings, I am a freelance graphic designer. This really comes in handy as we create custom designs on our photo-strips.

Portland Vendor Shout-Out: Make Up & Lashes by Melissa Pope

Engagement Inspiration Reception Vendors

Portland Vendor Shout-Out: Make Up & Lashes by Melissa Pope

We are so excited to feature this talented lady! And yep, this photo below is of HER…not a model. She is gorgeous inside and out. You will absolutely fall in love with Melissa and be blown away by her talents in the make up and lash department. If you are in Portland and have a wedding (or any special event coming up) you need this awesome gal on your team. She will make you look and feel your most incredible.  Meet Melissa! And check her out at www.makeupbymelissapope.com!

                                    Melissa Pope, photographed by: Sara May Photography

 

AOW: Where are you originally from? And how long have you been in Portland?

Melissa: I am originally from Huntsville, Alabama and have lived in Portland for 4 years now.

AOW:  What is your favorite thing about Portland? 

Melissa: The food, the people, the constant fluorescent greenery, so much! I love this city so much.

AOW: What is your favorite spot or thing to do in Portland?

Melissa: My favorite spot in Portland is probably Washington Park, there’s just something magical about it.

Photo credit:  Danielle Elizabeth

AOW:  How long have you been working as a professional make up artist?

Melissa: I started working as a professional make up artist 6 years ago and an eyelash extension artist 1 year ago.

AOW: What people/training/experiences/opportunities led you to this career path? 

Melissa: Make up I fell into as I was pursuing a modeling/acting career years ago in Los Angeles. I learned tips from other artists and the more I did my own, the more I started doing my friend’s and I started to see a possible career path. Then I took a bridal makeup artistry class from celeb makeup artist Jena Perry which took my skills to a new level. Training with her was a game changer.

AOW: How would you describe the importance of your role & why do you feel a couple should hire a professional make up artist for their wedding day?

Melissa: There are so many aspects to a professional, competent makeup artist. Makeup artistry is of course key but what I find to be of equal importance is the presence they bring to the day. Weddings can be chaotic and emotional and my job is to infuse calm and make that bride feel like the most beautiful girl on the planet. Then of course showing up on time, (which means early) fully prepared and getting the job done perfectly and within the time constraints. That’s what you get when you pay a professional.

Photo credit: Sara May Photography

 AOW: What is the best part of your job?

Melissa: When the bride is all done with hair and makeup and puts on her dress. I’m usually cleaning up/getting ready to leave, but I always take a moment to watch her family and friends have a meltdown over the bride.

AOW: What do you find most challenging about your specific line of work or weddings in general?

Melissa: Clients not knowing what they want can be very challenging. But that’s why I require bridal trials, we figure it all out long before the big day so we go in with a game plan.

AOW: Do you work solo or do you have a studio and/or team?

Melissa: I work solo but am hired on by other artists as needed and vice versa. I have a great community of artists and we’re all very supportive of each other.

AOW: What do you attribute to your success as a wedding make up artist? What do you think makes you stand apart from others in your field?

Melissa: In terms of artistry, my focus is always on enhancing the natural beauty. My brides still look like themselves and I’ve built up a little reputation for being more of a “natural makeup up artist”. But don’t be fooled, I can slay a smokey eye too. In terms of experience, I really take the time to get to know my brides and connect with them. Many of them become friends and I then watch them go on to have babies, it’s a beautiful thing.

                                     Photo credit: Andrea Zajonc

AOW: At what point in the wedding planning process should clients hire you?

Melissa: I get hired on average 6-9 months before the wedding day. Portland has a somewhat limited wedding season so I recommend snagging the artist you want ASAP.

AOW: Where do you draw inspiration? Are there any current trends you are excited about?

Melissa: I follow a lot of artists on Instagram and of course YouTube. I’m currently a sucker for dewy skin, soft eyes and a bold lip.

AOW: What is the most important thing that couples should ask someone in your profession before hiring them?

Melissa: I’d say it’s less about asking them questions but more about seeing their work and making sure you like their energy.

AOW: What is your best advice for wedding clients?

Melissa: Take your time to find the vendor that suits you and your needs.

AOW: Anything else you’d like couples to know about you?

Melissa: I think that about covers it!

 

Thank you Melissa! We love your work and will promote you every chance we get! Here is her website again: www.makeupbymelissapope.com

 

 

 

Real Oregon Wedding at the Gorgeous Wilmes Hop Farm

Ceremony Couples Inspiration Reception Vendors

Real Oregon Wedding at the Gorgeous Wilmes Hop Farm

Oh my goodness, what a gorgeous wedding!  Jin and Eric’s wedding at Wilmes Hop Farm was fun, romantic and oh so stunning. The colors they chose really popped against the vibrant green. Take a look at their images and get inspired!

Wilmes Hop Farm is a family owned and managed venue, and what an incredibly warm and hospitable family it is. Every time we have visited the smell of fresh baked cookies or bread greet you at the door. The Wilmes are generous enough to open up their home for bridal parties to get ready.

Another favorite part of the property is their barn. It is so cute and a perfect place for the bar. It is also a nice shaded place to keep a cake, should you get married on a warm summer day.

The rich jewel tones Jin and Eric chose to use was so fresh and I loved how they carried that richness and vibrancy through thru every aspect of the wedding. The bridal party dresses coordinated with each other beautifully and their bouquets unified the look perfectly. Speaking of bouquets, the bridal bouquet Your Perfect Blossoms created is one of my all time favorites.

While this wedding is off the charts stunning my favorite images are the ones that show the joy and love Jin and Eric have for one another. Sweetlife photography captures that joy so well. It is clear to me, they have a wonderful life ahead of them!

We included a complete vendor list down below the pictures. They had one heck of a team!

Vendors