Jennifer Carroll Events ~ Afton, VA

When we met Jennifer Carroll, we immediately fell in love with her extraordinary style. Her real weddings have been featured in multiple issues of Weddings Unveiled including the current Spring, 2009 issue featuring Brook & Josh, who married at Veritas. In addition, we featured her gorgeous custom invitation and favor designs right here on Completely Unveiled. You can visit that post by clicking here. Read on to learn more about Jennifer Carroll Events and enjoy the inspiring images of her work that Jennifer has shared with us.

Jennifer Carroll is based in Afton, VA. To contact Jennifer Carroll Events, visit the website by clicking here or call 540.456.6550.


Weddings Unveiled: Tell us a little bit about Jennifer Carroll Events.
Jennifer Carroll: I opened Jennifer Carroll Events in the fall of 2004 with the dream of using my creative gifts and talents to help couples have a wedding that was from the heart. Most people are so busy with their careers that they don't know or understand how to organize anything as complex as a wedding and they are wise to be daunted. There are so many details both large and small that need attention and there are many ways to waste money and resources. I partner with each of my clients to guide them through this process, offering advice to maximize budgets, resources and fun!

WU: How did you become an event designer? When and how did you begin Jennifer Carroll Events?
I have always had an interest in making a big splash with life's celebrations. Even as young as a pre-teen, I would swag 100's of yards of streamers and balloons in my families small dining room to make birthdays and holidays even more festive and special. I remember being around 14 and hiking out into the field behind our house to chop down a tree for the kitchen because I wanted to have a kitchen tree filled with homemade ornaments! In later years, when I was modeling in New York and LA, I would always wander behind the scenes at the big galas and talk to the staff to learn how this or that lighting or design effect was achieved. When I moved to LA in the early 90's my sister offered me the chance of a lifetime - to be an event assistant at the prestigious Davidoff of Geneva store in Beverly Hills. They had a private club in the store and held a lot of exclusive events to dazzle their celebrity clientele. It was there that I realized I could do this for a living. I continued to work in the industry for several years, learning as much as I could until I finally had the chance to open my own business.

WU: Tell us about how you work with engaged couples, whether as a team or individually.
JC: I have a small team who works with me on weddings. I also have another lead planner, Melissa Burr, who works with me. She is amazing and I feel so blessed to have her on board. When Melissa and I are planning with clients we always try to keep the focus on the couple. Who are they? What are their passions? Then we come up with clever and creative ways to layer their personalities into the wedding day. After all, their guests are coming to celebrate them! In addition, every couple wants to have "the best wedding ever" and we work hard to make that happen. We've found that infusing the couple's personality completely into the day is a terrific recipe for success. My assistant Jenny stays on top of all of the logistics and keeps all of us on track with deadlines and details!

WU: Describe your wedding style.
JC: I am drawn to weddings that have a simple elegance -- nothing too fussy -- and are filled with lots of meaningful details, including beautiful papers. I love papers and believe that by taking a little extra time to get creative with papers you have an opportunity to really make a statement. After all, a wedding is filled with papers - from programs to place cards, they're a great way to tell your wedding story.

WU: What inspires you?
JC: I am inspired by so much! I love music, fashion, interior design, nature and good old-fashioned fortitude! For example, Susan Boyle and Paul Potts are just as inspiring to me as Coco Chanel and Audrey Hepburn. I read some wedding magazines but tend to focus on fashion, food & interior design magazines and books. I look outside of the typical wedding arena for inspiration and when I find it, I file it away in my mind and wait for the right client. Music is very important to me especially while I'm designing for clients. Some days I'll have Debussy playing while others it's Muse (a british band). You never know what will open the flood gates of inspiration!

WU: How do you keep your ideas fresh?
JC: I don't like to repeat designs and since every couple is different, I seek out their uniqueness and then try to translate that into the event. I push myself to keep creating and evolving. I don't like to stand still and am always thinking about how to reinvent a theme. I never settle for just ok.

WU: What was your favorite wedding and why?
JC: Oh, what a hard question! Every wedding is special and amazing and has it's own flavor - and I'm really not just saying that! - But yes, there are a couple that stand out. One is a wedding I designed last summer for an amazing couple, Tatiana & Justin. It was filled with poetry and romance and lots of candlelight. So gorgeous!!! Another beloved wedding was the wedding of Amber & Charlie which was held in one of the gardens at UVA. We strung dozens of chinese lanterns in the trees and enjoyed an al fresco dinner under them. It was breathtaking! For a wedding to be a favorite though, it needs to have a lot of details. I get so excited when a couple allows me to "run" with an idea. When they trust me with it, I in turn deliver something spectacular!

WU: What makes Jennifer Carroll Events different from other wedding and event designers?
JC: I believe that it's our heart. We really care about each couple and work so hard to make their dream come true. We aren't trying to put "our stamp" on it. I really want guests to walk away from the wedding with a feeling of having been dazzled. I want them to have been infused in the personalities of the wedding couple. I hope wedding guests feel that they know the couple even better because they attended their wedding and that it was a very personal experience.

WU: What would be your ideal wedding assignment or dream wedding to design?
JC: Ahhh, since I'm a dreamer this is always changing, but one of my ultimate dream weddings would be held in an English or French manor garden. The garden paths would be bordered with beaded lanterns creating a sparkling fairy light. Candles would be hanging from every tree branch and floating in the garden pools. Thousands of peonies, crisp white linens, candelabras, canopies of soft organza blowing gently in the evening breeze... ahhh, how romantic. I think of it as the Count of Monte Cristo meets Jane Austen!

WU: Tell us three things you can't live without.

1 - Music. I love all types but currently I listen to alot of classical and modern British bands.
2 - Books. Jane Austen!!
3 - Candles. I love Seda France's French Tulip candle. It smells delicious!

WU: What is the best advice anyone has ever given you?
JC: To not give up on your dream! No matter what, follow your heart, even if you're scared, do it afraid!

WU: What is the best advice you can give to an engaged couple?
To focus on quality over quantity. Zino Davidoff was famous for saying that he'd rather smoke a better quality cigar but have fewer of them. That concept of quality more than quantity stuck with me. I see it apply over and over to weddings. Inviting fewer guests but having amazing details at your wedding will give everyone happier memories.

Images below are courtesy of Jennifer Carroll Events and photographers as noted.

Images directly below by Jen Fariello.

Images directly below by Eric Kelley.

Images directly below by Hunter Henkel.


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