Surprise Carnival Wedding: Lisa + Evan – Part 2

bride and groom ferris wheel

After their gorgeous ceremony, it was time for the reception! I just love the decorated reception space (done by none other than the Bash, Please gals) – and wait until you see their outdoor carnival! A bit more about the idea for the carnival from Lisa, The idea for the carnival came about when we joked that it would be fun to have games at the wedding. My style already leans towards whimsy, and that’s where the reception design was heading, so the carnival wasn’t too far of a stretch from there. We sort of looked into it as a joke, but it turns out that a ferris wheel is not as expensive to rent as you might think. So we went for it. We kept it a complete surprise from everyone (except my mom and dad) and nothing was better than seeing the look on our guests’ faces when we told them there was a carnival outside.

hanging frill

seating chart

hanging frill

carnival reception

carnival reception

checkered dance floor

checkered dance floor


And the surprise carnival!

carnival reception

ferris wheel wedding

popcorn and cotton candy

skee ball

skee ball

colorful pinwheel dessert backdrop

pie bar

bride and groom

Our Favorite Memory From The Wedding

Either when Evan sung my favorite Bruce Springsteen song to me and I crowd surfed or watching our guests reactions when they found out we had a carnival outside.

wedding dance party

bride and groom on ferris wheel


I’m pretty sure they succeeded in throwing an epic party for all their friends + family!! Congrats to Lisa + Evan!!

In case you missed the first post about this wedding that features the ceremony, you can check it out here.

Our Advice To Those Planning Now

There's not too much say about the planning, other than "this too shall pass." Whatever you're stressed about is not that big of a big deal, but emotions are running high and you'll feel those feelings regardless so just honor it. Hopefully your partner is good about agreeing with you in the moment and then offering a hug and a sweat treat when it's over.

On the night, stick with each other the whole time. Everyone says that it's a blur (it totally is) so be sure you're experiencing it with your partner. Don't worry too much about saying hi to everyone - invite them to come see you on the dance floor and if you've done your job right they'll be having too much fun to worry if you stopped by their table during dinner.

Oh, and tell everyone to keep their speeches to under five minutes knowing they'll still go a little longer and have someone in your wedding party review them in advance to be sure that folks aren't repeating stories.

photography: Birds of a Feather Photo // venue: The Book Bindery Culver City, California // event design, planning + florals: Bash, Please // wedding dress: Elizabeth Fillmore // hairpieces: Bridesmaids were from Miss Ruby Sue, bride’s was Jane Taylor Millinery // bridesmaid dresses: J.Crew // hair: Lindsey Hunt at Chop Chop // makeup: Kim Greene // groom suit: Giorgio Armani // cinematography: Son of Shark Pig // paper goods: Bash, Please // catering + pies: Whoa Nelly! // music: Cowling Gang Band // cocktails: Pharmacie LA // frill: Geronimo Balloons // dj: DJ Gary Ames of The Flashdance // vintage rentals: Found Vintage Rentals // linens: La Tavola

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