Gracious Events Blog

Peterson Party Center

We’ve said it a million times to clients, we LOVE helping you pick out linens and rentals! We understand that it sounds like we should get more hobbies, but I challenge anyone who is planning an event not to fall in love with this process.  Where else do they let you tear all their linens down (and then kindly put them up for you after), move chairs all around the showroom and stay for too many hours (and shockingly they still let us back in).

So it was with much excitement that we visited Peterson Party Center last week!  Alicia Lessing, Event Consultant, began our tour in the main showroom of Petersons’ new 100,000 square foot facility – unbelievable.  Conveniently positioned around the tables were samples of all the chairs and stools they offer and we were extremely happy to see new ideas for our industry.  Fantastic inventory as well – all of their stemware, flatware, dishes and linens make it easy for anyone to visualize their upcoming event!


As eye popping as the showroom was, it was all the other stuff that really excited us! The warehouse (or the back of the house as we say) is where Peterson’s really earns the “one stop shop” title.  We are still amazed at the architect that had to come up with the floor plan that houses, cleans, maintains and organizes all the inventory they have.  Something new to us, they even boast the largest tent inventory in New England, which I may add, is also cleaned and stored on site!


Lastly, the linens.  Oh the linens…there isn’t a fabric, color, texture or pattern the most mercurial bride can’t find in their collection.  All linens are made by in-house seamstresses and implanted with an RFID (radio frequency identification) chip, so one extra overlay added to an order, just hours before an event, will be guaranteed to land on a table before the first chord of the cocktail hour is played! The endless selection of in-house linens (which will be even more “endless” once the official merger with Table Toppers takes place, and they move all that beautiful fabric on in!).


And here is where Peterson Party Center exceeded our expectations – they have an in house suite of offerings for our clients that just made our job easier.  They offer a state of the art chef’s kitchen available for tastings using the clients caterer, a large boardroom where multiple tables can be set for easy decision making, as well as a smaller conference room for individual client meetings.  Our clients are busy and getting things done in a timely, and productive manner, is key to our success.


Peterson Party Center has come a long way from it’s early days of supplying chairs for local funeral homes.  For those visual folks like ourselves, it is a virtual candy store of color and texture only to be truly experienced in person! Thank you Alicia for a great tour and we look forward to working with you soon!

Images provided by Luster Studios


The “Post-Wedding” brunch

Written by Tania Atkinson

The main focus of any wedding is of course, your big day! All the months and months of planning come down to that one moment when vows are exchanged and the party ensues.  Countless articles have been written on how to plan the perfect reception dinner, how to find the best band, and where to hold this festive occasion.

As wedding planners, we’ve noticed that about a month or two before the wedding, the dreaded question hits the couple: “What do we do with everyone the day AFTER the wedding?!” Don’t be so quick to dismiss this dilemma. We’ve seen many a wedding where guests just don’t want to leave! They had such a great time the night before, they don’t want the fun to end!

Well, never fear.  Here are some fun and easy ways to celebrate your friends and family one last time with a post wedding brunch or breakfast, and then send them on their way.



Espresso shots adorned with cute little tags are a great way to get the morning started. Using signage of any kind is a great way to continue your wedding theme, but in a more playful way.



Your wedding breakfast or brunch doesn’t have to be anything formal.  In fact, after a late night of celebrating, your guests may just appreciate a casual, come-as -you-are morning meal. Ideally, the brunch should be close to where the guests are staying, and having to-go options for food makes in easier for those who need to hit the road or catch a flight home. A cereal or juice bar is something that can be prepared ahead of time and is inexpensive too! they are great ways to add color to any hotel lobby, small function space or even your home!

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And for those friends and family who don’t need to hit the road, don’t forget the Bloody Mary bar or Mimosa Bar. Nothing like a little “hair of the dog” to go along with all the rehashing of the night before!



Choosing foods that are easy to prepare and can be made ahead of time makes it especially helpful when you’re not quite sure how many faces may appear after the night of festivities.  Make your wedding breakfast or brunch fun, easy and a reflection of you!


All images found via Pinterest!

The Governor’s Academy Wedding – Byfield, MA

Written by Tania Atkinson

We are always blessed with cool and kind clients – and this wedding was no exception.  We got the chance to work with a wonderful couple, and their equally amazing parents, at Governor’s Academy in Byfield, MA.  What was even more special was that the bride’s family has a long history at the school, her father actually grew up on the campus and her grandfather was an important part of the staff.  C.J. and Michael planned a unique, interactive weekend long event for their guests – that would give them a little glimpse into their past and their joint present interests.   We had school bus rides to and from campus on yellow school buses, guests stayed in the dorms on campus, and a wedding day softball game was played on the Navins Field…named in honor of her grandfather.


The ceremony was a beautiful collegiate affair.  Bridesmaids in navy blue, groomsmen in khakis, navy blazers and red striped ties complimented the father-of-the bride, ring bearer and flower girls all in seersucker.  The bell in the tower of the chapel rang as the newly married couple left the church and all the guest gathered for a group photo on the campus green.


C.J. and Michael chose a creative way of naming and displaying their guests’ tables.  Every table was given a saying, name or word that had significance to both or either of them, and those table names were displayed on a barn door at the cocktail reception.  Duplicate table signs were hung on tree branches.


Following a lovely open-aired cocktail hour, guests were directed to the gorgeous Sperry Tent, which was tastefully decorated with navy, sailor striped, and white linens, centerpieces with antique library books stacked under mason jar floral arrangements.  The Japanese lanterns that hung above the tables provided the perfect warm glow to illuminate the beautiful sail cloth tent. It was a truly magnificent sight.


Everyone danced well into the night to the sounds of the Wicked Smart Horn Band.  The stars were out that night in June when friends and family convened on the grounds of this historic school to celebrate the marriage of two really down to earth, fun people and to remind everyone that friendships last long after school.





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