Thursday, June 8, 2023

Conceptualising Your Wedding at an Empty Event Space

A poll on our IG revealed that more couples these days are moving away from conventional wedding venues such as ballrooms. Instead, empty venue spaces with the likes of Maison Miaja and Cargo39 are increasingly getting more popular and we can totally see why!

They give you the perfect empty canvas to conceptualise and style the wedding of your dream. Still, starting from a clean slate isn’t always easy. If you’re wondering how and what you should consider when you’re planning to tie the knot in such a space, read on! Because the Pros in our industry has some gold advice to share!

Wedding of Paul & Cleo x Floral Magic
Paul and Cleo (of @cleochangmakeup) tied the knot in 2020, amidst the global pandemic, at the Visuals Art Centre. As a bridal makeup artist for more than 12 years, Cleo is adamant about steering away from the same-old format that wedding is done. So, aren’t we glad that she and, her now husband, Paul had such a distinctive vision of how their wedding should look like? To turn their ideas into reality, they made the sound choice of pulling in Linnette and her team, the very people who make @floralmagic.

empty event space decor
Photo courtesy of Paul & Cleo, and Iki Company
Q: What do you like most about your chosen venue?

Paul & Cleo: We envisioned our wedding to look ethereal and minimalistic, so we chose the Visual Arts Centre because it is a clean white space with lots of natural light that gives us plenty of room to be creative with the decorations. We like that it is nested right in the city but hidden away from the public’s eye. The art galley’s longish and narrow layout also allows us to have a march in for our matrimony. And what we love the most is that they allow pets, so our dog Castle was with us the whole wedding.

Q: Tell us more about your wedding theme and inspirations!

Cleo: As the matrimony is done indoors in the Arts Centre, I wanted the floral installations to be positioned so that it will be fully utilised as an altar and as a photo backdrop. A flower arch wouldn’t be ideal in the indoor setting so I requested Floralmagic to have the flowers surround us at different heights so that the flowers will always be visible when we are standing or sitting. Floral arrangements are ikebana inspired to be very structured to fit into our clean and minimalistic settings.

Even though we had catered bento sets for the reception, I was determined to have a formal dinner setting. So I bought disposable plates, cutleries from Taobao and my husband and I tied the ribbons over the tissue napkins and the place cards. All these efforts to fulfil a vision! Best part is people couldn’t tell those were disposal utensils!

And if you’re curious how Cleo’s brief was executed by Floralmagic, we’ve gotten Linnette to share with us her process and what to keep in mind when you’re trying to pull together your own empty canvas wedding, including what you should convey to your florist!

Q: Are there any special consideration when one is decorating an empty canvas event space?

Linnette: Some white spaces can look a bit clinical/stiff. the real challenge in dressing an “event space” is to make it warm and cosy, especially for a 50 pax wedding.

Q: From the florist’s point of view, is there one important/particular question you will always ask the couple when they engage you to do their wedding florals? And why?

Linnette: I always ask what is of importance to them, and how they would like their wedding to look and feel.
My advice to couples would be to spend the budget on areas which would be photographed the most. Flowers are perishable and wilt quickly especially in our weather, but keeping this in mind helps us to work with the budget better.

Q: Does angle of photos come into consideration for the wedding decor?

Linnette: Of course! we take note of how the couple/guests move around, or need to be accommodated with backdrop framing them, so it was imperative to make the arrangements 360.

empty event space decor
Photo courtesy of Paul & Cleo, and Iki Company
Q: With Cleo’s wedding, what was the most challenging or most fun part of doing the flowers for her wedding? (You both were part of each other’s wedding team!)

Linnette: Cleo had a very detailed vision of what she wanted with flowers. There was a certain breed of Lilies which we haven’t worked with before that she wanted. We also ordered Taiwanese Oncidium orchids and apple branches (because she’s from Taiwan!) that can be quite patchy in their availability.

There was uncertainty, but there was also excitement! Luckily for us, everything came as we wanted – the Lilies bloomed well, the Oncidiums draped beautifully, the foliage were tall and bushy, we couldn’t ask for more. The challenge was us living up to her expectations, and the most fun part was that she had 100% trust in us to do what we do best.

Q: For any brides who want something similar, how much should they budget for the different areas of decor and personal flowers?

Linnette: I usually recommend that flowers should be at least 20% of your entire wedding budget and scaled upwards depending on how important they are to you. Some people see flowers as merely an accessory, while others use flowers to set the mood and exemplify the theme for the entire wedding.


If you’re looking to hold your wedding in an empty canvas space, what you need when conceptualising the look of the wedding are

  • a clear idea or vision of what you want including what is important to you (not just how it looks but also how it feels)
  • determining how important flowers are to you and setting your budget accordingly
  • focusing on the areas that will be photographed
  • absolute trust in the floral team

We hope this has been helpful to all of you who are having your wedding in an unconventional space. Let us know how it turns out, we will be very keen to see or even happy to feature them!

(Psst, if you’d also like to see how Cleo did Linnette’s hair and makeup for Linnette’s own wedding or even how Linnette’s wedding turned out, join our Telegram channel for updates when the articles are published!)

Professionals engaged for the wedding:

Other Articles

Leave a Reply