The Surprising Detail That Will Pull Your Whole Wedding Together

You’ve thought about the flowers, the dress, the decor, all the details that make a wedding feel special and you. But according to celebrity wedding planner Lisa Vorce, there’s one important detail you’re forgetting — the scent. After all, scent is known to trigger memory, so why not give your day a signature fragrance that will forever remind you of your big day!

Why is it important for a bride to think about scent on her wedding day?

Scent is an often overlooked but super important part of wedding design. The sense of smell is closely linked with both memory and emotions, so selecting a scent that you love for your wedding day can increase emotional bonds between you and your husband-to-be, and your guests. Your signature scent can also kindle happy wedding memories every time you wear it following the wedding day.

When planning her wedding, a bride should think about appealing to each of the 5 senses:

  • the look (from bridal gown to tabletop),
  • the feel (all of the textures of both the décor and attire),
  • the taste (from cocktails to dinner menus),
  • the sounds (from quartets to DJs) and finally,
  • the scent. Selecting a scent, whether with florals, and/or with a personal fragrance, helps to bond that signature scent with the special experiences and memories of the wedding day.

What are your favorite scents for brides today?

Brides should wear whatever scent makes them feel the most beautiful.  That being said, from my perspective, the process of choosing a fragrance is a bit like choosing a dress. It should reflect your personality, and also match the overall theme of your wedding. You should consider the season, the venue, the formality of the event, time of day, etc.

I’ve been recommending Ralph Lauren Collection as a go-to. There are ten totally different, super luxurious fragrances that represent various destinations around the world. Each fragrance is crafted around a singular scent emblematic of the setting it represents. White Lily is perfect for a classic, country-club wedding, Sage is perfect for a wedding in the mountains, and Lime or Orange Flower are amazing for warm-weather destination affairs – Tulum, Palm Beach.. you name it.

What factors should a bride consider when deciding on her personal fragrance for the big day?

Selecting a fragrance is a very personal decision – first and foremost a bride should think about her first reaction to smelling the fragrance – Do you love the scent? Does it evoke pleasant memories or feelings? Another way to think about fragrance is based on the type of bride you are…

  • For the Jetset Bride: This bride is interested in travel, and her wedding is a destination.  The best way to cater to her is to give her something that travels. As a jetsetter, she might be drawn to citrus fragrances that conjure up the sunny scents of the Riviera. Two favorites are Ralph Lauren’s Lime and Orange Flower.
  • For the Romantic Bride: More traditional in her wedding planning, this bride has envisioned her wedding since she was young.  Her wedding will be classic perfection. Romantic brides favor something classic like Ralph Lauren White Tea and Rose fragrances, which hearkens back to a romantic English elegance.
  • For the Urban Bride: Chic and fashion forward, this bride isn’t afraid of playing with color and trends to create a bridal event that is sure to be remembered.  City brides tend to enjoy fragrances with glamorous and robust notes. Two favorites are Ralph Lauren’s Vetvier and Magnolia.

What are some of your favorite flowers to naturally scent your wedding?

There are so many possibilities, but who can resist gardenias? Gardenias are as pretty as they are fragrant, and they bring so much joy to the bride, groom and guests as they walk into a room and experience the visual aesthetic of beautiful white bouquets anchored with a sweet, warm scent. For tropical weddings, Frangipani, or plumeria, is a must. The frangipani scent is a rich, lush floral – as soon as I smell it, I feel like I’m on a tropical island, even if I’m in my studio in Southern California. Alternatively, for more arid, rustic destinations, I might scent the wedding with greenery elements such as sage – sage has a natural, rugged quality that works well in mountainous or desert destination weddings.

What are some unexpected touches any couple can add to their wedding to make it unique? 

I say this all the time, but to quote Shakespeare “To thine own self be true.” Couples need to think about and celebrate what makes them who they are. Is it tumbleweed from their hometown in Texas? Butter cookies from their favorite bakery in the Northeast? Did they meet playing volleyball on a beach in Southern California?

All of those particular experiences and traits can be added to the wedding to make it unique: Tumbleweed makes great art in a cocktail lounge set up. Favorite cookies make the best welcome gift for guests. And a volleyball game with hand painted t-shirts that say #bride or #groom makes for a super fun activity preceding the wedding.

When it comes to selecting your wedding theme or style, where should you start?

Again the bride needs to start with who she already is. She can start by looking inside her closet. What colors and textures does she wear? Or, she can look at her favorite room in her apartment or home. Does she reside in neutrals? Does she gravitate towards bold, jewel tones? Is she surrounded by beautiful object d’arts or lush, green houseplants? All of these things translate into wedding design – just on a much bigger scale.

What are some wedding trends you’re loving right now? Some you’d like to see disappear?

I honestly would like to see the word “trend” disappear from our vocabulary. Your wedding day is the day to be who you truly are – it’s about you. So, even if the latest Hollywood starlet just celebrated her wedding bohemian style on a beach in the Caribbean, if that isn’t your vibe, go with what makes your own heart sing. I love when my brides or grooms say, “Oh this is SO me!” Sometimes we will have the bride or groom surprise the other with something that is uniquely them. For example, we will work with the bride to stock the After-Party with jars of the groom’s favorite cookies or candy from childhood. The groom walks in to the After Party — with mood lighting and a great beat by the DJ, and then sees his favorite candy and cookies in the lounge vignettes – and it is just so much fun. That is what celebrations should be about – celebrating the most unique, special attributes of both the bride and groom!

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