When my friends and Morris dancing teammates, Meg and Kevin, announced their engagement, I immediately sent them a copy of Here Comes The Guide to help them plan their wedding. That’s where Meg found the Montclair Women’s Cultural Arts Club in Oakland, the site they chose for their reception. Her daughter clinched the choice saying, “Lots of places are really elegant, but this one makes me happy.”
Deep red walls and lovely flowers greeted guests as they arrived. At the bar, a drink menu with Kevin’s original cocktail recipes was prominently displayed. Kevin is known for his custom cocktail creations, so it’s only natural they were featured at the reception!
Cocktail in hand, guests filtered into the ballroom and listened to the Montclair Women’s Big Band play. Strings of tiny white lights draped along the ceiling beams and dancing flames from tea-light candelabras provided a magical ambiance. The wedding cake, created by Montclair Baking (detail above), was patterned after two family heirloom vases whose designs were expertly translated in fondant. The result was a true work of art.
The day was picture perfect, and most of the guests were out on the patio enjoying the sunshine. I was enamored with Meg’s dress, which she had made herself. It had a corset-style bodice decorated with three-dimensional embroidery of leaves and flowers. It must have taken her months to complete. Truly a labor of love!
After dinner, the Morris dancing began. I took the stage with my fellow musicians and played for my teammates. The evening was a steady stream of lively music, laughter and dancing. As it turned out, Meg’s daughter was right: You can’t leave Montclair Women’s Club without a smile on your face!