Bougainvillea and Cacti Filled This Vibrant Wedding in Woodside, California
If you’ve ever doubted that texture is key to great design, look no further than Eileen Lacey (36 and a wedding planner) and Chris Murphy’s (35 and a national account manager) wedding. Prickly pear cacti, feathery bougainvillea, rugged leather and bohemian rattan: Everywhere guests looked during the couple’s big day, they were greeted by layer upon layer of eye-catching texture. Eileen and Chris initially planned to tie the knot in Mexico, but when the pandemic forced them to keep the event close to home, they decided to bring a vibrant Mexican aesthetic to their coastal California nuptials. The key to achieving this vision? “Lots of color and tons of bougainvillea everywhere!” says Eileen. “We wanted the design elements to feel like they just as easily could’ve been from Mexico.”
While bougainvillea was the wedding’s focal bloom, the designs also used celosia, dahlias, zinnias, cacti and dried sago palms. Fresh papayas and mangoes added a tropical touch. “We donated all of the locally sourced flowers and fruit on the tables and bar after the wedding,” says Eileen of the eco-conscious approach the couple took with their botanicals. “Sustainability was really important to us and we tried to minimize waste as much as possible,” says Eileen. In particular, the couple focused on making their food service eco-conscious. Beyond bamboo dishware at cocktail hour, Eileen and Chris “purchased the dinner napkins instead of renting and gifted them to our guests after the wedding.” Additionally, “for place cards, we used leather tags that guests could reuse as luggage tags,” says Eileen of the green touch.
In keeping with the Mexican inspiration, Eileen and Chris offered three tequila cocktails: a spicy marg with jalapeno and Tajín; a Paloma with grapefruit juice; and a floral marg with hibiscus, Cointreau and a pink Himalayan salt rim. To avoid single-use plastic straws, the duo served drinks with edible tamarind straws. As for food, “Mexican food was a must!” says Eileen. “At cocktail hour, we served a trio of mini tacos. Dinner included enchiladas, chile relleno and grilled vegetables. We also had churros with chocolate and caramel dipping sauces for dessert."