Paperwhite | Crisp, clean, & contemporary design marry in this eco-smart reception shoot from Soirée by Tara Guérard

Number of guests: 80-100

Cost: $100,000

Event Design: Tara Guérard


Today’s Charleston weddings are all about mixing the hospitality and charm of the Old South with modern aesthetics. Soirée by Tara Guérard did just that as they transformed the Gibbes Museum of Art’s intimate back courtyard into a garden of paper florals. “This ceremony and reception is for a young couple,” says Tara. “It’s fresh, it’s ‘green,’ and it still illustrates what people want when they choose Charleston.”



“A lot of young brides want traditional dress shapes with lots of flourishes,” says Tara of the Oscar de la Renta gown that inspired this bloom-filled reception. To get the look, the gals of Soirée crafted 60 flowers in various sizes and styles from recycled tissue paper and fastened them to everything from the fabric curtain sheers that formed the backdrop of the ceremony site to stems of champagne glasses. “You could organize a whole bridal shower around making these paper flowers,” says Tara. Playing off the white paper decorations, she added mercury-colored tables, hurricane lanterns hung with platinum satin ribbon, gray silk pillows, white upholstered sofas, and white lacquer stools to create a polished scene.



Because Southern weddings often feature hors d’oeuvres rather than sit-down dinners, Iverson Catering created hearty tapas, like shots of butternut squash bisque and walnut-encrusted goat-cheese fritters, as a nod to the tradition. The tapas were served from one bar while a second, fully stocked drink bar stood nearby.



Besides incorporating an abundance of recycled paper, Tara included other green elements amidst the event. Scores of beeswax candles were grouped throughout the site on tables and in lanterns to minimize the need for electricity. And opting for one downtown location for both the ceremony and the reception meant guests created a smaller carbon footprint as they could theoretically walk from their hotels to a single spot for the day’s events—never stepping foot inside a car.


Vendor List

Cake: Wedding Cakes by Jim Smeal

Catering: Iverson Catering

Design & Specialty Rentals: Soirée by Tara Guérard

Location: Gibbes Museum of Art courtyard

Signage Calligraphy: Blooming Quill

Stationery: The Lettered Olive Stationery

Calligraphy: Elizabeth Porcher Jones

Rentals: Snyder Event Rentals & Snyder Lounge