Uniquely Yours. Personalizing your wedding.

W eddings offer couples not only an opportunity to declare publicly their love and commitment to each other, but also to express their unique personality as a couple. Tired of staid nuptial traditions and seeking a more personalized ceremony, more couples are inventing their own weddings or adding their own touches. They want the occasion’s distinctive details to reflect them. Those who plan to tie the knot in the Inland Northwest, Coeur d’Alene or the Walla Walla area have top-notch resources at their fingertips. They include purveyors of wedding rings, bridal gowns, and perfect flowers, as well as other talented experts who can help make any wedding unique. Moreover, couples will find the region offers a vast array of wedding venues.

the ring and the dress

Photo Cred: Green Wedding

The ring is often the sign that an engagement is official. Couples who lean toward the nontraditional may want to select a vintage ring. Finders Keepers, on Second Avenue in downtown Spokane, offers wonderful estate jewelry, including wedding rings. Some of the vintage rings that owner Deena Caruso carries are adorned with diamonds and precious gems. Several are consignment pieces. Dodson Jewelers, on Riverside Avenue, is a fourth-generation family-owned store. Its extensive selection includes estate jewelry from several important design periods—Victorian, Art Nouveau, and Mid- Century Modern—as well as contemporary rings. Many of these fine pieces have been passed down through several generations, and if the history associated with a piece is available, Dodson Jewelers includes it. www. finderskeepersboutiques.com, dodsonsjewelers.com

After the ring, it’s all about the dress. Walla Walla-based designer Laurie Rudd Haluska makes wedding dress dreams come true. She is an Emmy-winning designer who graduated cum laude from New York City’s Fashion Institute of Technology. Her exquisite “Kathryn and Alexandra” bridal line was born from her love of Cinderella-like ballroom gowns and her considerable costuming experience. The styles range from Renaissance to modern day. Exclusively designed, constructed and fitted, each dress is a one- of-a-kind treasure. www.haluskadesign.com 

location, location, location

Jaime Johnson Photo Cred JJE

From elegant hotels to casual outdoor spaces, the venue sets the tone for any wedding. The setting provides ambiance, conveys the level of formality or informality, and establishes the “feel” of the event. When it comes to location, some couples may prefer to work with an event planner. Jaime Johnson, of Jamie Johnson Events (JJE), is a wedding choreographer and party planner extraordinaire. She and her team interpret a couple’s style, and then help create a memorable, personalized event. Johnson has earned the reputation as the Spokane area’s go-to planner. From traditional weddings to unconventional ones, her company does it all. They collaborate with a trusted network of photographers, florists and caterers to ensure that the couple will have the perfect start to their “happily ever after.” www.jaimejevents.com

With its old-world elegance and stunning architecture, downtown Spokane’s Davenport Hotel is perfect for those who want to have their wedding in a timeless setting. The adjacent, newer Davenport Towers and the quaint Hotel Lusso are part of the Davenport Hotel Collection and provide additional options for the big day. The Davenport specializes in weddings: its attentive, experienced wedding staff is prepared to make any couple’s wedding dreams come true. The Davenport Flower Shop, tucked off the main hotel lobby, creates stunning arrangements for weddings. This romantic hotel is truly a premier one- stop shop for planning and celebrating that special day. www.davenporthotelcollection.com

Walla Walla’s Marcus Whitman Hotel and Conference Center combines history and luxury. From innovative food and fine wine to state-of- the-art ballrooms, this grand hotel offers the ideal wedding location, right in the heart of the wine country. Every event at the Marcus Whitman is special. The professional staff personally coordinates each wedding. The hotel can accommodate both intimate gatherings and large celebrations in style. www.marcuswhitmanhotel.com

The Spokane Club, in downtown Spokane, blends timeless style and presentation with exceptional service and amenities. Whether it’s a classic wedding with elegant touches or a free-spirited celebration, the iconic club offers the complete package under one roof. It offers tasteful options for weddings of any size. Couples who prefer a small, intimate wedding will like the welcoming library with its massive fireplace. Those who want a large, elaborate ceremony will be happy with the Grand Georgian Ballroom. www.spokaneclub.org

Couples looking for a rugged but cozy setting should explore the Sleeping Lady Mountain Resort in Leavenworth. Because it is nestled in the Cascade Mountains, it affords couples and their guests an uncommon wedding experience. From settings on the banks of Icicle Creek to indoor spaces that reflect the spirit of the Inland Northwest, Sleeping Lady allows couples to design a memorable wedding experience with an accent of the great outdoors. www.sleepinglady. com

Blackwell House is a stately luxury hotel, rich with character. The historic building in downtown Coeur d’Alene has been tastefully restored to its original grandeur. With its sophisticated charm, it evokes the feeling of a fine family home. It has a spacious kitchen and dining area, and it is ideal for large garden weddings and receptions. The home’s interior is also perfect for intimate indoor weddings. www.blackwellboutiquehotel.com 

Located in the historic Browne’s Addition, the Roberts Mansion is a bed and breakfast and event center within walking distance of downtown Spokane. The home has been thoughtfully restored in a way that celebrates its Victorian heritage. All-inclusive wedding plans can be prepared for intimate gatherings inside the mansion, with room for larger outdoor celebrations by the luxurious gazebo. www.ejrobertsmansion.com

other unique touches

Photo Cred: Attic Event Rents

A great way to add personality to a wedding is to create a one-of-a-kind setting. For example, couples can rent repurposed furnishings and restyled accessories from The Attic, a vintage rental company based is Hayden, Idaho. The Attic provides brides, photographers and stylists with props and antique furniture for weddings, events and photo shoots. The Attic owner, Alisa Lewis, is a connoisseur of classic, hard-to-find items. Whether a couple is looking for old church pews for
an outdoor ceremony or dozens of mason jars for fresh-cut reception flowers, touches from The Attic ’s 
delightful collection can add distinction and charm. www.atticrentals.com

A retro photo booth is another way to give a wedding a shot of personality, as well as provide added enjoyment for guests and the wedding party. Spokane-based Flat Four Photography, owned by Jordan and Whitney Tampien, offers fun photos with props that range from glamorous to zany. Photos can be black and white or color. www.flat4photography.com 

Photo Cred: aNeMone 

aNeMonE, in downtown Spokane, is a full-scale paper florist that offers arrangements and bouquets that reflect nature in a remarkable, yet lasting way. aNeMonE has transformed an age-old craft into a modern and decorative art form. Mary Eberle is the shop’s creative director. Her passion for art and handmade crafts culminated in the creation of more  than 600 paper flowers for her own wedding and planted the seed for the business. www.handmadepaperflowers.com.

Sunflower Cottage, in downtown Coeur d’Alene, is a full-service florist that offers fabulous floral designs and creations. Owner and designer Valorie Cooper is always up on the latest wedding trends. She is skilled and confident in creating fresh arrangements for weddings, from quaint and simple to exquisitely elaborate. www.coeurdaleneflorist.com

Couples who want clever party favors should consider candles from Dandles Candles. Dandles illuminates events with scented candles in creative, custom containers. The company was born on the kitchen countertops in the small apartment of local television personality Dana Haynes. She and her friends enjoyed spending Sunday afternoons pouring candles. From the kitchen to the garage to the current home studio, Dandles Candles continues to grow. Haynes makes high- quality soy candles in an array of containers that can be tailored to the décor of nearly any event. Dandles candles are available at various boutiques and salons throughout the Pacific and Inland Northwest. www.dandlescandles.com

In recent years cupcakes have become a stylish dessert. No longer associated just with children’s birthday parties, they have found their way into posh soirees and wedding receptions. Sweet Frostings, a blissful bakeshop in downtown Spokane, has seen an increase in “cupcake wedding cakes.” Sometimes they accompany a traditional wedding cake. Sometimes they are used in place of it. Cupcakes make an eye- catching display, they are easy to serve and eat, and they can be decorated to fit a wedding’s theme or colors. www.sweetfrosingsbakeshop.com

To receive unique wedding gifts, a couple may want to consider bridal registry at Kizuri, which means “Good!” in Swahili. This vibrant, community- inspired shop has quality merchandise that is earth- friendly and is Fair Trade or from local artisans. www.kizurispokane.wordpress.com

Get lucky!

Many couples head to Las Vegas to get married in a festive casino environment. But couples in the Spokane, Coeur d’Alene, Walla Walla area do not need to go that far to find large, first-rate resort- style casinos. The region is home to two that are fully prepared to handle all-inclusive weddings and receptions.

Northern Quest Resort & Casino, located in Airway Heights, Washington, is a super-sized venue that features a luxury hotel, high-end spa, world-class casino, fourteen diverse dining and lounge options and a variety of event spaces that can accommodate any size wedding. www. northernquest.com

Coeur d’Alene Casino in Worley, Idaho, has undergone numerous renovations throughout the years. The result: a true destination resort. In addition to world-class gaming, there are six restaurants, a resort-style hotel with the largest day spa in the Northwest, a top-rated golf course with the stunning backdrop of the mountains and nearby lakes. www.cdacasino.com  

As published in the 2013/2014 Essential Guide


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