Coriander Goes County

Posted by Alison Westlake, August 18, 2015
Coriander Girl Picton

Coriander Girl - Picton, ON

When planning a destination wedding that is close to Toronto or even a quick Ontario getaway, Alison of Coriander Girl has the details you need. With some tips from Alison + the amazing events team here at the Drake, a Prince Edward County Wedding may be the perfect choice for your special day. From stunning lakeside views to locally grown eats + wine, a wedding in the PEC is like no other.

I wasn’t always a florist. Before opening Coriander Girl in September of 2009, I was an actress living and working in Toronto. As thrilling and romantic as it was to be a struggling artist, I was yearning for something more. It was my love of gardening that inspired my career change and the desire spread joy. I saw a gap in the market for local, rustic, garden inspired blooms and after 6 exciting years, I’m so glad I decided to take that huge leap of faith.

After Tyler and I married in August of 2011, we bought an old converted church just outside Prince Edward County where Tyler is originally from. I commuted between Toronto and the county for 2 years before we found out a wee one was on the way. Our baby girl truly was the inspiration for us to take another leap and move full time to Picton, Ontario. We spent those 9 months before Hattie arrived, preparing the Toronto flower shop and wedding studio to run smoothly in my absence. I had no idea just how incredible the county was until I arrived here June 28th 2014, fresh out of St. Joseph’s with a new baby girl. Those early months were electric, exhausting, yet inspired. Here I was pushing a stroller down main street after only 1 month of giving birth and dreaming of how and when I might open a second location. A sign appeared in the window of a beautiful old building on Main street and the rest as they say, is history. Coriander Girl PEC opened in May of this year 2015 and it’s been a miraculous adventure. The community has been wildly supportive and the weddings inquiries have been pouring in! We have made beautiful contacts with the local growers here, which we’ll speak more about in our next post. We’re blown away by the level of talented wedding vendors out here in the county and we want to share the list of our favourites with you now. Consider me your Coriander Curator for the day, it’s a one stop shop for all your wedding needs down here in beautiful Prince Edward County!

Drake Dev

Drake Devonshire - Wellington, ON

When we learned the Drake Devonshire was opening in Wellington last year, we flipped our lid! We’ve worked with the Drake many times in Toronto and we were excited to embark on this county adventure knowing we’d have the opportunity to work with the Drake out here too. It’s an ideal spot for a destination wedding, far enough from the city to feel like a holiday yet less expensive than asking your guests to follow you to Hawaii. The Drake Devonshire is a one stop shop for unique lakefront ceremonies and strolling dinner receptions. With hotel packages available for group stays, you can definitely make it the ultimate destination/close to the city wedding weekend! The food and drinks are also exceptional + crowd pleasing. With signature seafood stations and locally purveyed passes mini meals, the Drake Dev knows how to do culinary excellence within the county.

Ephra Event Design

The Wexford House in PEC styled by Ephra Event Design

Once a couple has chosen the event space for their wedding day, they can start to hone in on the details. Flowers (wink wink), wedding attire, invitations, photography, desserts, music and more. But, even before all of this we recommend a good wedding planner to help keep everything organized for you, it’s money well spent for the peace of mind. We work with Ephra Event Design here in Picton. Sonya Szabo, Dawn Stafrace and Lyndsay Richmond are the three musketeers that go way beyond planning, they design decor, table settings, prop styling and more to take your vision to full fruition. If you dream it, they can make it happen!

Wedding Photography

Johnny Lam Photography

Aside from flowers being one of the most important things on my wedding day, photography is quite possibly the most worthwhile investment. You want your day to be beautifully captured by a professional, even though Uncle Tony just bought a crazy digital SLR and used to shoot sports events back in high school, maybe it’s time to bench Uncle Tony for this one. I’d call in the lovely and talented Johnny Lam for this one. His credentials are off the charts yet he feels like an old friend. He immediately puts you at ease and makes you feel such comfort, it’s that comfort and joy that will resonate in the photographs he takes of you and your partner. I first learned of Johnny in an issue of Toronto Life where he took his couple to a grocery store in China town. The images were so playful, you could really get a sense of who these people were and you wanted to join their party. Looking through Johnny’s photographs, I believed in their love and I was rooting for them. Sometimes photographs can be stiff and overly stylized, Johnny’s images are classic, timeless and always share a certain intimacy.

Wedding invitations

Invitations by Momento Design

Invitations are an important element of any wedding because the help set the tone for what the day will ultimately be like. A classic white with gold lettering might suggest a classy wedding at the AGO while craft paper and calligraphy would suggest a country setting. We used a talented designer by the name of Daniela Patane Miller for our invitations, she captured the true essence of who we are as people and executed our vision brilliantly. Her company is called Momento Design and she books up fast!

Wedding Cake

The Pink Lunch Pail Bakery

Dessert bars have been trending for some time and we don’t see it going away any time soon. The county has some lovely bake shops but one that we’re particularly fond of is The Pink Lunch Pail. Rebeccah is a decorated pastry chef and the proof is in the ‘puddin’, her desserts are drool worthy and your guests will want seconds and possibly thirds! (If you’re planning to host a wedding at the Drake Devonshire, they have an excellent pastry team that will take care of all your baked good needs!)


Kelly's Shop

I found one thing stressful when planning my wedding and it was the wedding party attire. I found my dress quite easily but my Maid of Honour took forever. I wish I’d known about Kelly’s when we were looking for a pretty dress. Kelly’s is a Picton staple. When you need a party dress, you visit Kelly and you hope when you’re there that her little girl Ramona shows up to try on dresses with you because this little lady has one infectiously joyful personality!

For your wedding gown, Runway Bridal in Belleville is a lovely option. With hundreds of styles to choose from and a very friendly staff, this is a must visit.

ZEST in store

Zest Kitchen Shop

When it comes to music, the county is a hot bed of talented musicians. Vintage Soul is an amazing group of artists that can essentially do it all. From djing to acoustic, to a full horns cover band. These guys will get your guests up and out of their seats.

And lastly, you’re going to want to thank the people who have helped you the most during this incredible time in your life. The county offers a myriad of shops to find that special something to say thank you. Our favourites include in no particular order, Zest Kitchen Shop, French County, Gilbert and Lighthall, Nickel’s, KOKITO and Angeline’s Tuck shop.

Thanks for joining me on this County Wedding Extravaganza!!
Alison xo

Coriander Girl Ltd.
202 Picton Main Street
Picton, ON
K0K 2T0

1604 Queen Street West
Toronto, ON
M6R 1A8

Posted in: Drake Devonshire