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Bright as the summer sun and as beckoning as a beach cabana on the French Riviera, French blue and red bring charm to any fête. Get inspired by this fun color palette and incorporate it into your own celebration with these red and blue wedding ideas.
Red and Blue Wedding Stationery
Make it a red-letter day! With clean lines and crisp colors, this four-piece suite works in laid-back yet elegant weddings anywhere from Nice to Nantucket. The die-cut white sleeve reveals just enough information to intrigue guests (your respective initials and the wedding date), along with a peekaboo pop of color made by layering the light blue info insert and the red invite underneath the cutout. As for the reply postcard, that's just tucked in the back.
Greet out-of-towners with a welcome bag you can totes make on your own. All it takes to customize the canvas carryall is two stencils (one for the shape, another for the type), red and white acrylic paints, and a foam brush. Postpainting, fill it with the provisions for a Parisian picnic: sparkling cider, mini wheels of gouda, spicy honey, apples, and fresh bread (add some Swedish Fish for an on-palette sweet). We included straws and coasters, too; download our coaster design here.
The Details: Canvas tote, $3.50 each for 150, ToteBagFactory.com; Custom two-part stencil, $50, StencilsOnline.com; Cider, $14 for 4, Aval-Cider.com; Honey, $4.50 for 2 oz, MikesHotHoney.com; Custom coasters, $25 for 25, CoasterFactory.com; Jumbo straws, $149 for 2,400, AardvarkStraws.com; Berry basket, $2.25, FancyFlours.com.
Create a sophisticated display of table assignments with a handful of items that are available at any crafts store. First, cover a one-inch-thick foam board with fabric, stretching it taut and taping it to the back (this 20-by-30-inch board holds 20 cards). Next, arrange strips of grosgrain ribbon horizontally in equally spaced rows, securing them with hot glue along the bottom edge and on the ends. For extra oomph, add a second layer of thinner ribbon, as seen on the top row. Slip calligraphed cards alphabetically into the "pockets" you've created and voilà! We'll leave the who-sits-where to you.
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Put on a Little Red Lipstick
Make a minimal look marvelous by punching it up with a vivid red lip. On your eyes, add falsies and a little liner—for definition in photos—and you're good to go.
The Details (from left to right): Lipstick Queen in Jungle Queen, $24, SpaceNK.com; MAC Cosmetics Lipstick in Russian Red, $17, MACCosmetics.com; Nars Semi Matte Lipstick in Jungle Red, $27, NarsCosmetics.com.
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Dress Your Wedding Party in Red and Blue
What's blue and white and red all over? Your wedding party! Loosen the dress code—and shirtsleeves—by outfitting your gals in menswear-inspired button-downs paired with ultrafeminine skirts. Solid colors will keep the focus on the contrasting silhouettes; reserve the pattern play for the ring bearer and the flower girl. As for the main event, finish a classic white gown with a simple bouquet of tulips tied with ribbon in your shades.
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Give On-Palette Wedding Party Gifts
No budget for a buddymoon to Cannes? Take attendants big and small on a virtual trip to Europe with espadrilles (for an extra-special touch, we had a local tailor monogram them), travel guides, or a nautical knit lovey.
The Details: Espadrille Store "Lola Saint-Tropez" platforms, $83.50, EspadrilleStore.com; "The Strongbox" storage box, $28, BestMadeCo.com; Hand towel, $6, BestMadeCo.com; Aurélie Bidermann "Copacabana" bangles, from $120, AurelieBidermann.com; Herb Lester Associates' How to Read the Menu guide, $12 for set of 3, Amazon.com; Security blanket, $30, Estella-Nyc.com; "Sky Blue" espadrilles, $27.50, EspadrilleStore.com.
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Have a Colorful Cocktail Hour
Play up the color combo at cocktail hour with a striped awning and customized coolers (that we stenciled and spray-painted) stocked with drinks.
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Sip a Signature Cocktail
Since this isn't just any old clambake, offer a signature cocktail, like the Lillet Rosé take on the Hugo with lemon tonic, elderflower liqueur, and floating raspberries.
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Set the Table in Red and Blue
Spark conversation by serving a shareable meal, such as a seafood feast that begins with shellfish and chips. This pretty table hits the sweet spot between refined and relaxed, thanks to printed menus bearing a custom crest, dish towels–turned-napkins, enamel servingware (including mugs filled with fries), and glass bottles of anemones, tulips, ranunculus, and cyclamen along the center. Attendees can pick a seat, find the wooden spork with their name, and dig right in.
The Details: "Shell Bisque" plates (top), $18 each, CanvasHomeStore.com; "Abbesses" plates (bottom), $21 each, CanvasHomeStore.com; "Maryclare" tumblers, $12.50 each, CanvasHomeStore.com; Collins glasses, $12.50 each, CanvasHomeStore.com; "Pattern 451" flatware, $50 for four 5-piece place settings, CB2.com; Serving tray, $36, FalconEnamelware.com; Mini tumblers, $9 each, FalconEnamelware.com; Leafware mini sporks, $10 for 100, Leafware.com; Striped fabric, $14/yd, GraylineLinen.com; "Elly" dish towels, $4 for 4, Ikea.com; Calligraphy, price upon request, DeborahNadel.com.
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Top Off the Wedding Cake
End the night with a treat that will satisfy anyone with a savory or a sweet tooth. This six-tier fromage blanc cheesecake from New York City's Lafayette Grand Café & Bakery is flavored with vanilla bean, lemon zest, and black pepper, and baked atop an organic cornmeal crust. Blueberries and strawberries provide the finishing touch.
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Send Home Sweets
￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼￼We love macarons as much as the next Francophile, but they're not the only way to send friends home with a smile. Box up France's other fine pastries instead: These choux à la crème (or, as we like to call them, cream puffs) are shown here in vanilla and elderflower flavors, and the calissons are made from candied melon, orange peel, and almonds and topped with royal icing. Both make magnifique favors.
The Details: Cream puffs, $6/box, Lafayetteny.com; Calissons du Roy René calissons, $45 for 36, TheCalisson.com. "Tango" favor box, $13 for 10, PaperPresentation.com; Perforated labels, $8, Bellocchio.com; Calligraphy, price upon request, DeborahNadel.com.