Mid-Century Modern Pan Am Wedding at the Skirball Cultural Center
Photography by: Visuals by Arpit
This Mid-Century Modern Pan Am wedding is featured today on The Knot!
As collectors of Pan Am memorabilia, Joe and Adam wanted to host a wedding inspired by the iconic airline. They included plenty of mid-century modern details, as well as actual décor from the airline and the Pan Am Experience. This one of a kind wedding took place at Skirball Cultural Center in Los Angeles. Planning and design by Anything But Gray Events.
Pan American Airways, commonly known as Pan Am, was the principal and largest international air carrier and unofficial flag carrier of the United States beginning in 1927. Pan Am is considered one of the most luxurious and iconic airlines in history. Pan Am’s sense of style, hospitality, in-flight fashion, and design is legendary.
The wedding invitation suite, designed by Gilded Swan Paperie, incorporated the signature Pan Am blue and gold. All the paper goods and signage were based on the original Pan Am Airlines imagery and were meant to be keepsakes.
Joe and Adam donned matching blue suits and brown shoes from Friar Tux, along with custom-made floral yellow ties with accompanying pocket squares. Adam went for an added vest while Joe went sans vest!
Don’t forget the fun socks!
The couple stood beneath a metal chuppah decorated with whimsical yellow flower arrangements. “Yellow in the flowers popped and strongly complemented the blues and whites, especially in our boutonnieres against our cobalt blue suits,” the couple says.
“Our florist, Flower Duet, even incorporated the Pan Am logo in the chuppah design.”
The custom-made Ketubah mirrored the colors and circular Pan Am symbol seen throughout the wedding design.
Although guests didn’t have a seatback pocket in front of them at the ceremony as they would on an actual plane, we used the opportunity to create wedding instructions in the form of a tri-fold Safety Instructional pamphlet. This included information about the wedding party, memorials, Jewish traditions, as well as fun facts about Pan Am Airlines.
While most wedding programs are left by guests on their chairs or the ground at the conclusion of a ceremony, these guests were thrilled to take home this memorable keepsake!
Due to religious reasons, the ceremony took place right at dusk. For this reason, outdoor lighting was crucial. Lights for Nights created a soft, romantic glow with overhead and spotlighting.
Guests were directed from the ceremony site to the cocktail hour by Pan Am Flight Attendants in original uniforms. All the authentic Pan Am items and aviation rentals were courtesy of The Pan Am Experience.
Guests made their way through the cocktail hour to the Arrivals/Departures board. Here they found their name and destination airport (aka seating assignment) listed.
This wedding was one of my favorites to design to date! From start to finish it threw me into creative overdrive. As I have shared in previous blogs, sketching is a big part of my creative process as a wedding planner.
The image on the left was my original sketch for the backdrop. The image on the right is the final product created, built, and hand-painted by Paper Moon Shoppe.
I always incorporate a preview of the reception room with my couples in the final timeline. This is a chance, typically during cocktail hour, for them to see the finished space before guests enter.
Having Adam and Joe see the reception room completed was one of my favorite moments of the whole night. Their priceless reactions were so heartwarming.
From the start of planning, we knew the primary design would be focused in the reception room. Transforming it from a fairly stark and modern space to something a bit more colorful & mid-century.
The massive backdrop spanned 12ft high by 24ft wide and was erected on-site and was the first thing guests saw as they walked through the entrance.
Keeping the chairs slim and sleek let the focus be on the table design. Guests stepped back in time and prepared to board the Pan Am 747 Clipper San Francisco.
The domed ceiling skylight cast a cool glow over the reception room. We wanted to recreate the feeling of looking out a plane window while on an evening flight.
DJ Señor Amor, tucked away in the clouds, was the evening’s “Captain” blending a mix of modern, classic, and crooner musical hits!
Adding elements to the tables like custom menus, chargers, and cookies from Adam’s hometown of Baltimore, incorporated a personal touch.
The table florals were low to promote conversation throughout dinner. Each table was a specific destination and those seated at that table had a personal connection to that city.
Sweetheart tables don’t have to feel like islands in the middle of the room. In keeping with the aviation theme, our lovebirds dined in the clouds.
Anything But Gray Events is here to help. Contact us today!
Venue/Catering/Bar: Skirball Cultural Center / @skirball_la
Planner/Designer: Anything But Gray Events / @anythingbutgrayevents
Photography: Visuals by Arpit / @visualsbyarpit
DJ: Señor Amor / @thesenoramor
Backdrop & Photobooth: Paper Moon Shoppe / @papermoonshoppe
Lighting and Chuppah: Lights for Nights / @lightsfornights
Florals: Flower Duet / @flowerduetla
Paper Goods & Signage: Gilded Swan Paperie / @gildenswanpaperie
Cake: Susie Cakes / @susiecakesbakery
Pan Am Rentals & Flight Attendants: The Pan Am Experience / @panamexperience
Lounge: Town and Country Rentals / @tacer_losangeles
Male Grooming & Beauty: Betsy diFrancesca / @betsybmu
Suits: Friar Tux / @friartux
Napkins: For Your Party @foryourparty
Grooms: @jgoldca & @agreensfo