Our reception venue is the Vimy Officers' Mess. I've never been to any event held there and (when we booked the venue) I only knew of one wedding held there (my cousin's older half-brother). Since booking it, four friends (two couples) have had weddings there. I'm no longer close friends with either of these couples so, not surprisingly, I was not invited to wedding. I did manage to look at the pictures on facebook!
The Vimy Officers' Mess is, just that, an officers' mess on the base in Kingston (Canadian Forces Base). To have a wedding there, you need to be sponsored by an officer. The majority of the venue was constructed at the start of the 20th century (at least, that's what I recall from the mini-tour when we booked it). Here's the view from the front:
I don't have any pictures from the inside, but picture appropriate period décor, crown molding, solid wood dining tables (in the dining room) and rich furniture (in the private rooms). Everything one would expect in a century officers' mess.
However, there's an addition that was built sometime in the late '60s or '70s.
... and my relationship with '70s architecture recommences. I feel like I've been in a battle like Peter versus The Chicken.
Here's what I have to work with for the dancing:
The wood panelling can cast an odd glare, which can be tricky for photographers (as demonstrated in this picture). The room is also difficult to decorate, with fairly standard rules - no stapling or affixing items to the walls, no balloons, everything must be removable, etc. The dining room is in the older part, and will require little to no additional decorations - just centrepieces. Hoewver, the main ballroom (where the dancing will take place) is entirely in this '60/'70s addition.
I swear, the venue looks better in real life than in the lower picture! This is just a corner of the ballroom to give you an idea of the impact the wood panelling can have, both on the ambiance and on creating glare/reflections. In reality, the ballroom opens into a large area with stunning high ceilings, albeit with wood panelling up the tall walls. And - and about a third of the room is a set of windows with a picturesque view of Lake Ontario.
I'm thinking of decorating with a bit of white/ivory tulle or ivory tablecloths on the tables (though if I use tulle, I wouldn't use too much - I don't like swaths of tulle) to soften the room just a bit. If I throw in soft candlelight and some centrally and appropriately placed dramatic centrepieces on tables, I think I can change the focus of the room from wood panelling to to a dance reception.
So ... What do you think of my decorating ideas? How would you decorate to reduce the impact of the wood panelling?
5 hours ago