Casual Italian Themed Rehearsal Dinner

Scrolling through photos on my phone, I came upon pictures from our son’s wedding two years ago. As mother of the groom, I was responsible for providing a rehearsal dinner. That was no easy feat when traveling 2,000 miles across the country from Oklahoma to Washington. The happy couple were outdoorsy types, so a formal dinner wouldn’t suit them. We found a casual pizzeria near the outdoor wedding site, and it ended up being the perfect setting for a casual, Italian-themed rehearsal dinner.


The morning of the rehearsal, we made our way to the flower market in downtown Seattle:


Where we found bunches of inexpensive brilliant flowers:

market flowers

By early afternoon we braved Seattle traffic and made our way to the pizzeria in a neighboring town (Brooklyn Brothers Pizzeria in Everett, Washington):


Earlier in the day we went to a Michael’s craft store and bought lightweight frames, black paper and chalk for signs:


ball light

After leaving the craft store, we went to a grocery store and purchased cans of tomato sauce, which were emptied and rinsed to create containers for the flowers:

flower can

can two

The Rehearsal

Then we headed to the wedding rehearsal at the bride’s grandparents’ beautiful farm with a view of Mt. Ranier in the distance. I cried when my son walked me down the aisle to the tune of Ashokan Farewell (the theme from the Ken Burns PBS Civil War series). I cried when the music changed to the theme from the Disney animated film Up. I pretty much cried through the whole happy thing:


After the rehearsal, guests received an invitation with directions to the location:


Rehearsal Dinner

And a good time was had by all! We pre-ordered pizzas and had an open tab on soft drinks:


The dessert cannoli’s were so huge we cut them in half and they were perfect!


We ate, we drank, and the next day….they were married:


Happy 2nd Anniversary, Ben and Melinda!

Hope you enjoyed this little walk down memory lane. Maybe there are some ideas you can use from our casual Italian-themed rehearsal dinner!


  1. Wonderful post, Charlotte! Delightful, creative-themed rehearsal dinner. “Happy Anniversary” to your son and daughter-in-law! Nice photos. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Charlotte, I’m the mom of two boys and my husband comes from Seattle (we live in Virginia), I loved your ideas! Knowing how crazy the traffic is from downtown Seattle to Everett, I’m glad your flowers didn’t wilt! LOL. Looking forward to gaining some precious daughters-in-law in the years to come! Thank you for sharing!!

  3. Your ideas for the Italian-themed rehearsal dinner is exactly what I’ve been looking for. Thank you!

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