One of the most unique apsects of our wedding had to be our venue. We chose The Heirloom Arts Theater for its affordability, its character, and most of all, its unique layout. It didn’t hurt that the owner’s sister was a close friend of mine either. Though the Heirloom is unarguably a very cool place, it doesn’t exactly scream “wedding!”, so we knew redecorating it would be a challenge. We needed to dress it up without compromising its natural charm, and we needed to be able to transform it in a very short period of time. We would only have three hours the morning of the wedding to get it ready. We called on our family and friends, and were thrilled when they showed up in hoards to help that morning. Together, we transformed the Heirloom with time to spare.
Michelle, my maid of honor spent a few nights surging huge pieces of fabric that we used as curtains and valances throughout the theater. She also pumped out a few throw pillows that we used to turn an awkward set of steps into a loungey seating area on the theater’s balcony. Between the fabric, and some carefully placed faux flowers, we kitsched the heck out of what was a pretty much punk rock setting. Take a look at the before and after photos of the bar, for example:
The stage was another focal point that needed tackling. We went through a lot of crazy ideas before we settled on a pretty simple, but cute solution. We covered the back curtain with silver, blue, and white stars, making the stage look a little reminiscent of an elementary school production. Then we lined the edge of the stage with foil garland, and shiny cardboard letters that spelled out “Mary & Scott Forever”.
We used strings of Christmas lights anywhere we could to add a touch of extra light. Our good friends, Brian and Melissa, found every cute niche to stick lights in, giving the place a little extra glow. It looked especially cute in the entrance and hallway, where we also created a kitschy Elvis shrine, and hung a floral ceiling decoration.
The bathrooms were pet projects of my sister, Sarah, and I. We expected them to be in much worse condition. Usually, when you think of concert hall bathrooms you expect tons of grafitti, bashed fixtures, and general grossness. Not so with the Heirloom! We were amazed at how well both bathrooms looked when we stopped by to take a closer look. On the day of the wedding it was easy as cake to dazzle up both rooms. We turned the ladies room into a super feminine, pinup parlor, while we gave the men’s room a retro casino lounge theme.
The ladies room is almost done in this photo. Sailor showed up later on with Betty Page playing cards, and neon colored parasols. You can’t see them very well here, but we also had some really cute pink and green paper lanterns hanging over the stalls, courtesy of Mrs. Leonard.
We rented a wooden dance floor to encourage folks to boogy, and to give the main area a little more depth. We also rented buffet and round tables and teal linens. The color of the table cloths helped to bring out the deep red color of the walls, making the whole main are appear brighter and more lively. We threw in some red, turquoise, and silver balloons, and decorated the tables with our etched centerpieces, votive candles, and sprinkled them with faux daisies. For the ceremony, we covered the dance floor in chairs, creating an aisle, and a place for most of the audience. Others sat at tables, or watched from the balcony above. After the ceremony, we had friends clear the dance floor while servers passed out champagne.
The same theme of tables and chairs continued on the balcony, providing a more secluded area for people to hang out. We added some extra candles up here, Michelle’s leopard pillows, some fabric to cover the upstairs bar window, and just for laughs, a life size cutout of Boba Fett.
Here’s a slide show of our morning helpers getting the Heirloom all dolled up! (With some other pre-wedding shots thrown in.)