I was lucky enough to be sent to the 2018 WedLuxe show taking place at The Carlu in downtown Toronto over the weekend. I chose one of my great friends Breanne to come along with me, as she’s getting hitched this year too.
Admittedly, I’m not too wedding crazy and prefer to keep things chic and very simple. I have a tiny venue booked downtown that will hold 28 of our nearest and dearest friends and family. I ordered my dress online from the UK without trying it on first (GASP) and it’s not even entirely white (DOUBLE GASP), instead of the usual 3 course salad, chicken or steak and chocolate lava cake dessert we’re opting for a taco bar catered from Grand Electric (TRIPLE GA-, ok, you get it).
There are some things I could really care less about. I still have to buy my wedding shoes and to be honest; it feels like I’m having teeth pulled.
Breanne is the opposite, her wedding is about triple the size of mine and she’s booked a simply beautiful venue on a property in Hamilton. If my memory serves me right there is even a small waterfall on site. She’s not really into cake and has decided to ditch the idea entirely for her reception and stick to the usual desserts that follow dinner and maybe even a poutine bar, which I think is pretty bad ass.
So, seeing as we are two pretty different brides, could we both find were looking for at the show?
This year’s theme was ‘Reverie’, Celebration of Dreams and had over 100 exhibitors brides to be could mix and mingle with. When the elevators opened to the 7th floor of the Carlu and it certainly did look like a dream- flowers and chandeliers hung from the ceiling, a giant floral unicorn stood to greet you and we were passed a pink welcome drink garnished with cotton candy. We were off to a good start.
We received our bridal ‘passport’ which allowed us to get stamped and receive samples at 5 different stations. By the end of the day we walked away with truffles from The Boardwalk Truffle Bar, A glass of Rose from the Rose Pavilion, two O&B samples (I chose vanilla cheesecake and apple pie), a delicious baked meringue from The Odyssey of Love and a great gift bag on our way out as our last stop.
The event was certainly a lot to take in and there were so many stunning floral displays, models walking in skin tight lace gowns, and cakes that look like they should be in an art gallery at every turn. I had already selected my cake and like I said earlier, Breanne is deciding to go without but the displays we really enjoyed (and could see other brides enjoying too) were from the Vanilla Bean Cakery where the even the base of the cake display could be eaten since it was made out of sugar, Patricia’s Cake Creations which I think is a great choice if you’re looking to have a cake covered in fondant flowers, they were so beautiful, and for cakes that go above and beyond, Fine Cakes by Zehra were incredible! She came to the exhibit this year with ‘Italian themed cakes’ and they looked too beautiful to eat. The attention to detail was superb and I bet it would blow away guests at the reception.
If you’re looking for something a little simpler but still very chic, Succulent Chocolates can open a late night truffle station at your reception or create beautiful bonbon’s as your takeaway gift in any colours or flavours! (I tested their strawberry bonbons and coconut truffles and can confirm they are absolutely DECADENT! ) Get a quote at www.succulentchocolates.com
After admiring the cakes, we sought after jewellery. I was looking for the perfect earrings to go with my dress, and Breanne was after some bling for her hair. We stopped by Elsa Corsi’s booth to admire her collection. She’s based in Vancouver, but comes to visit Toronto a few times a year for events such as this one, and I was glad she did. I fell in love with earring’s she enjoyed so much she named after herself, ‘Elsie’ and Breanne really liked the look of her hair pins. We added them to our wish list. If you’re looking for the perfect pieces to wear on your big day, you’re in luck, she will be at a Trunk Show from Jan 18-20, 2018 at Valencienne Bridal, check out www.elsacorsi.com for more details.
Another jeweller we liked was Tara Fava. Breanne eyed some earrings she liked this time around and so did I. I have a pear shaped engagement ring and Tara had some stunning pear shaped earrings that I thought might work well together. It’ll be a hard call to choose between my favourites, and I mean, can’t I just buy both? Check out Tara’s creations online at www.TaraFavaJewellery.com.
Breanne is still looking for her fiancé’s ring and an eternity wedding band for herself, we found Susan Shaw to have some chic pieces that she can customize anyway you like, by appointment only, so please check out www.atticgold.com before you visit.
Still looking for a dress? We eyed these beauties from Elite Bridal, located in Mississauga. They offer 1 ½ hour private consultations and a champagne bridal toast when you say yes to the dress, to peek at their stock visit www.elitebridal.ca.
I also saw some fun tuxes available in every shape, size, colour and style with King & Bay. Book an appointment with Aashif Jamani !www.mykingandbay.com .
Need flowers? Why not check out Peppermint Weddings floral and event design? They offer classic and sophisticated arrangements and can be as involved in your wedding design as you need. Get more info at www.peppermintweddings.ca .
Wanting some really different engagement pics? Breanne and I had a lot of fun flipping through books of past shoots from Banga Studios. They had a truly unique way of capturing romantic little moments and have been featured in Harpers Bazaar, Huffington Post and WedLuxe magazine, I would highly recommend checking them out here: www.bangastudios.ca .
Have you booked your honeymoon yet? We were told all about a beautiful beachfront resort called Jade Mountain in Saint Lucia. The lavish 600 acre property features luxury honeymoon suites complete with their own private pools and butlers. We were told that it’s about an hour away from the airport, but if we wanted to take a helicopter instead, they are the only hotel in Saint Lucia with their own helicopter pad, well excuse me! Daydream here: www.jademountain.com
Looking for more of a staycation? Breanne and I were VERY interested in hearing about a new property opening in Elora (opening May 2018). The Elora Mill Hotel & Spa perched atop the thundering Elora Falls have rooms and beauty treatment centers overlooking the magnificent Elora Gorge. Each guest room feature oversized walk in showers, wood burning fireplaces and all the latest in room technologies. The on-site restaurant will be run by Executive Chef John Bakker, who has 20 years of experience under his belt with some of the best chefs from the most famous restaurants and hotels all over the world.
The hotel also offers fun experiences like zip lining over the gorge, glass blowing classes and fly fishing. Truly something for everybody. I’m a fan of romantic weekend getaways and I am very excited about the spring opening! Hopefully I can write a post about it in the future.
A fun idea I saw for the perfect bridesmaid’s gift and for what I’m sure will be great ‘getting ready’ photos are K.I.P matching monogrammed robes and pajamas. They are just so charming and great quality so your girls will be able to use and enjoy them for years to come. For more info and to see what options you can choose visit www.sleepinkip.com
If you’re newly engaged and looking for downtown venues, King Street West Hotel is having an open house on Sunday Jan 21 , 11am-4pm. Vendors will be on hand to answer any questions you have or take bookings, there will also be raffle prizes! Please RSVP at www.onekingwest.com/wedding-open-houseif you’re interested in attending!
WedLuxe was a really great experience and truly had everything a bride would need under one roof! If you’re newly engaged or planning a 2019 wedding (big or small) , I would keep an eye on their website for next year’s event. Tickets start at $75 and include gourmet samples and a gift bag.www.wedluxe.com
Huge thanks to PonyTail Mail for sending us, their awesome hair ties will never snag your hair, and in my opinion are great takeaway gifts for a bridal shower or bachelorette party! Buy some here : www.ponytailmail.ca .
Thanks for reading and congrats on your upcoming wedding!
Hey! I'm Sarah! A 30 something living in downtown Toronto with a great guy and an OK dog. I love seeing what my city has to offer and try to hit up as many fun events or attractions as I can! I haven't slept since 2004.