Interview with Annette Garcia-Kerslake of Simply Natural Events

03 | 10 | 2009

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Annette has found a niche planning lovely natural, organic, and green weddings. It makes sense that she has decided to call her company “Simply Natural Events.”  I love her happy style and good energy (Annette has lots of spirit and lots of patience).  I’ve asked her to chat with us a little bit about planning environmentally-conscious, beautiful weddings.

How did you get started in event planning?

“It kind of started more planning my own wedding. I was a wardrobe stylist, so it was a creative outlet… I had a couple of (film industry) friends who  asked me to help them plan their weddings and it took off from there. A design background is really helpful for weddings, aesthetically.”

Why plan green weddings?

“I’ve always been pretty organic as far as food and natural medicines.  For myself, I try not to do any chemicals, etc.  It’s the way I live—I’ve had that homeopathic lifestyle for maybe ten years. And now it’s huge and popular.  It’s nice to see that people are going that way.  I don’t want to impose it on anyone, but there are so many green, natural resources.  Why not add them into your wedding?”

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So, it seems like the age of irresponsible consumption / irresponsible weddings is over.  But we all want gorgeous weddings.  What are ways to go green and still be beautiful?

“I would say, I think the number one thing is to go for locally grown food. It’s not only healthy for your guests and you, it supports local farms.  I’m big on trying to support [other kinds of] local vendors, too.

“You can use organic silks … Now you have the option to buy a dress from a designer who’s using all organic fabric.

“Using vintage dresses is a great way to go green. There are tons of vintage dress shops now. And a lot of those shops have Vera Wang gowns that were $4000 a year ago, for $2000.

“Herbs and locally grown flowers are great for your centerpieces. Lavender, rosemary, and succulents, for instance, are plentiful, inexpensive, and have a low carbon footprint.

Annette says: “Renting is re-using. So you can rent.  Repurpose.  Use family heirlooms. You’ll start to become green in that way.”

“Instead of favors, try tree seedlings  … or you can donate to charity:  your guests will remember it more and it’s a cash write off.

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What are some other easy ways to go green?

There are tons of parks, vineyards, et cetera, that aren’t harsh on the earth. If you go to state parks or the LA mountain park system, at least you know the funds go to keep up the park.

Annette and I both love Temescal Gateway Park and Upper Las Virgenes Open Space Preserve.

What trends do you see or would you like to see in weddings?

I think for me, it’d probably have to be … Exotic or not exotic, small destination weddings – less people, but tons of—I don’t want to say decadence in a time of recession … Make it a whole weekend of several intimate parties, with 20-30 of your best friends.

I would love to see picnic weddings.  You could even get beautiful blankets, and each family could get a basket and a bottle of wine. That would be my dream trend.  For everybody to start doing picnic weddings.

For colors, I love teal and charcoal grays together.

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I love the thought of Frida inspired weddings, too: warm deep colors, with coppery or iron colored accents. Little vibes of Cuba and Mexico.  I would like people to use more colors and a variety of colors. I like colors that pop.  I think that’s [just] my personal preference.

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Annette ♥s:

  1. Chamomile Tea:  I drink at least 2-3 cups a day, keeps me calm and it’s good for the blood sugar.
  2. Vintage Fabrics: You can make scarfs, pillows, the list goes on.  I’ll hold on to fabrics for years and one day it’s just what I need.
  3. Greenstream Gourmet. The chocolate mint cookies …
  4. Fresh flowers or herbs in my house lifts my spirits and provide inspiration.
  5. Top Stick and a sewing kit are must have on wedding days and good to have for everyday emergency.
  6. Super Greens when I’m feeling low on energy.
  7. Del Bondio Wine (Bio dynamic, organic wine)
  8. Your Day Wedding and The Bride & Bloom magazines

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To enjoy more of Annette’s work, check out her website and her new blog which is full of news and wedding (and other fun) finds.

photo credits: top images, Sharaga Studios; images of the wicked Corpse Bride cake by Amelia Lyon; others by Gia Canali … and more images to follow.

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