And old world circus wedding: Erin + Brent

Categories   Real Weddings

The lovely Carissa from JL Designs sent us this thoroughly whimsical wedding she and her entire family helped create for her brother and sister-in-law, Brent and Erin. Full on Old World Circus style in the middle of Missouri. Because she put it so perfectly, thought we’d just give you a quick rundown straight from Carissa:

“This wedding was SUCH a labor of love for our family. It took a year and a half of blood sweat and tears to get it done…seriously everything was custom made – the dress, the benches, the ceremony backdrop, the linens, the games, the signs, the bridge, the dancefloor lining, the electrical rigging/light installation etc. Every vase and decor piece was either found in missouri or brought in from LA by me… its a one of a kinder!”

For sure. There are so many details it would be impossible to describe them all here, but just trust Carissa when she says that everything, literally EVERYTHING, was handmade or custom made or at least thoughtfully planned.

Erin really wanted to hold the reception and ceremony at her parents’ house, but because the house is surrounded by woods with a creek running through, there wasn’t enough space. Just as they were considering changing locations, her father had the brilliant idea to clear a space for the wedding, with his chainsaw.

“With the help of friends, family and neighbors my father forged a path through the woods, built a bridge and cleared a large expanse of land in order to provide a ceremony site. When I first saw the site I was touched by what my father had created for us and how beautiful it was all on its own. The space was calm yet full of life, love and spirit! I remember thinking how we could hold the ceremony that night and I would have been happy.”

Isn’t Erin’s top hat veil awesome?

Fire eaters! They will be the next trend in weddings. Along with synchronized swimmers, of course.

And the parasols over the dance floor = AMAZING!!!

Congrats Erin and Brent! Such a fun theme and such excellent execution!

You can see more photos on Erin’s blog and Green Wedding Shoes today too! Or you might catch a glimpse in the current issue of Real Simple Weddings. Hooray!

Photographer: Gabriel Ryan Photographers / Venue: Bride’s family house / Flowers and event design: JL Designs / Linens: made by family friend Laurinda Cox / Day of coordinator and prop styling: Sharon Taylor Designs / Furniture and props: collected by bride and family / Signs: handmade by the father of the bride / Umbrella rental: Bella Umbrella / Invites and paper: My Blue Tulip Design / Make up: Tabitha Headley / Music: Hey Jimmy / Fire eater: The Magic of Ziggy /  Catering: Simply Delicious / Cake: Cakes by Darlene / Dress designer: Silver Moon

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Social Love

Alexis - OMG I'm Getting Married on Feb 15, 2011

LOVE the umbrellas and the "I Do" Brew! Super stunning and gorgeous styling.

Erika {Borrowed&Bleu} on Feb 15, 2011

Phenomenal! There are so many extraordinary details but I think I love the floating parasols and the popcorn "stand" the most!

Katie {aisle candy} on Feb 15, 2011

This is such an adorable wedding! So creative. I think the bride's bouquet is gorgeous and I'm in LOVE, um, actually slightly obsessed, with her dress! Ahh! Also love her green earrings too :)

Jess * Magpie Paper Works on Feb 15, 2011

Those parasols are brilliant! Loving the 'Big Fish' vibe of the whole event. Delightful!!!

Ashley on Feb 15, 2011

Incredible! Where to begin, the parasols & sparklers, the popcorn & peanuts, the "dance off" sign - love it all. I admire a couple who isn't afraid to go for it and really work a theme like this. Fabulous result - wish I'd been there, ha!

Baby Invitation on Feb 15, 2011

A circus Wedding theme. Unbelievable!!!

Gaelan @ Uschi and Kay on Feb 15, 2011

I'm having a carnival themed wedding so this is great source of inspiration. Those umbrellas are a great idea!

liz | the nouveau romantics on Feb 15, 2011

those parasols / dance floor are nuts! so beautiful!

Paper Moss on Feb 15, 2011

This wedding is adorable! Especially love the stationery, but the overall theme is simply fantastic. What a fabulous night it must have been!

Liz U. on Feb 15, 2011

I love this wedding, the colors and details are just wonderful. I too am having a backyard wedding at my parent's house and I was wondering if they had any advice on the mundane aspects of a backyard wedding, such as bathrooms, parking, tent vs. no tent, etc. I would really love to get some advice from a couple who has been there, done that. Thanks!!

Thi on Feb 15, 2011

Congrats to Erin & Brent! What a lovely couple and a truly amazing day. LOVE YOU!

Jennifer on Feb 15, 2011

Oh MY! I don't even know where to start with this wedding. Her veil and dress! The popcorn and peanut display! Parasols! Cute signs! Lovely, lovely wedding. Thank you so much for sharing!!

Kim Poulston on Feb 15, 2011

Simply breath taking.... every picture is truly AMAZING .... LOVE, LOVE it!

Katie on Feb 15, 2011

I love everything about this wedding! literally...everything!

bash, please on Feb 15, 2011

So so fun and unique! Great job ladies!!

Carrie Rowe on Feb 15, 2011

so beautiful!!! and you're right, the parasols over the dance floor ARE amazing!!!

Bre on Feb 15, 2011

This is a decidedly fun and glamorous wedding! I adore the furniture in the outdoor space, I love the fun, circus touches and details. The bride's dress is stunning!

JL_DESIGNS on Feb 15, 2011

thank you A+K+J for this awesome feature! it was one of my favorites ever and so near and dear to my heart :)

Sarah on Feb 15, 2011

That location is spectacular. Kind of makes me want a Missouri wedding now!

Kristi@lovelyvelo on Feb 15, 2011

those parasols are too much... divine!!!

Rachel - theWeddingVine on Feb 15, 2011

The parasols over the dance floor look incredible! I can't believe something so simple could be so effective! Such an amazing theme!

Erin Pot Pie on Feb 15, 2011

This is such an honor! The post looks beautiful! Thank you for sharing our big/ carny day! I'm a kid in a candy store! Keep on posting! I LOVE IT!

Diane - your wedding reception planning guide on Feb 15, 2011

I just love the whole carnival/circus theme going on. Truly spectacular and a job well done..your guests must have gone "WOW"!

Jenny K. on Feb 15, 2011

ohmygosh I think I'm going to need to use this parasol idea for my upcoming wedding! Great idea!

Heather on Feb 15, 2011

A FIRE blower? Well that's just the most exciting idea I've seen in awhile.

Sarah Goodwin on Feb 15, 2011

What a fun theme with amazing details?! I love the parasols and corn dogs.

Katie Kingman | Brilliant Event Planning on Feb 15, 2011

My favorites things about this wedding...the multi-colored upside down umbrellas (wow!), the first dance and then later 'dance off' signs, and the fabric wrapped condiments!! There are so many lovely quirks about this wedding. Love!

Katie Kingman | Brilliant Event Planning on Feb 15, 2011

My favorite things about this wedding...the multi-colored upside down umbrellas (wow!), the first dance and then later 'dance off' signs, and the fabric wrapped condiments!! There are so many lovely quirks about this wedding. Love!

christina {simply modern} on Feb 15, 2011

this is quite probably the coolest wedding i have seen in a while! love how they thought outside the box to make it their own!!!

jaclyn @ the late afternoon on Feb 15, 2011

The velvet red curtain is so dramatic and the outdoor "living room" is fabulous! thanks for posting!

lydia {ever ours} on Feb 15, 2011

such an amazingly fun wedding. adore those upside down umbrellas!

Jacquelyn on Feb 15, 2011

AMAZING! Those umberellas REALLY add a WoW! factor.

albeit dot dot dot on Feb 15, 2011

What a fun theme for a wedding! Love those drawer full of peanuts! Amazing invitations~

Laura Miller on Feb 15, 2011

Love it, the vintage signs, her dress (oh my) beautiful

nina / ash and anchor on Feb 16, 2011

So gorgeous! I cant get over this wedding-- its simply fantastic!

Brenda on Feb 16, 2011

What an absolutely beautiful theme and setting! She is stunning and I love the funky birdcage veil! Neat flowers too. :-)

Leila | Be Inspired PR on Feb 16, 2011

OBSESSED with everything about this wedding Carissa did an amazing job! Congrats Erin!

Ladna on Feb 16, 2011

Hands down, the most fun and artistic wedding I've seen...the amount of attention to detail is insanely amazing! Carissa you have inspired me for 2011! Congrats to the lucky couple!

Rebekah Scarbrough on Feb 16, 2011

I love this combination of an outdoor, sunlit wedding plus a nighttime dance. It's hard to pull off!

Erin Pot Pie on Feb 16, 2011

Liz U, I would be happy to answer any questions you have. I know there is a lot to think about with a backyard wedding. I actually listed a lot of info on my blog,, but feel free to email me anytime. :) Love 100 Layer Cake!!!

Cheap Evening Gown on Feb 17, 2011

The forest wedding,it's so cool.Those umbrellas are special,Love it!

Cheap Evening Gown on Feb 17, 2011

The forest wedding,it’s so cool.Those umbrellas are special,Love it!

Cecilia Flaming on Feb 17, 2011

Wow! Love the theme! The detail and vintage theme are amazing as well as the bride's dress! :)

Amma // Beyond Beyond on Feb 18, 2011

I am late to the comment party, but I just wanted to add my two cents and say how stunning this wedding is. I love the upside down umbrella, and being totally absorbed by all things papery the invitation is paper porn, I love the circus motif. And the mismatched bridesmaid I love - totally! Great wedding and so many lovely details!

Brei on Feb 19, 2011

I adore everything about this wedding. Love all the thought that was put into it. It's all about the details! The parasols above the dance floor are so great. And I always love a mason jar at a wedding.

martha on Feb 20, 2011

add me to the list of those whoi adore every detail of your wedding! parasols, outdoor living room, the velvet curtains, the idea of embracing handmade and vintage! i'm in awe of the sheer amount of details you all put into this, it's truly wedding porn! :)

Em Scott on Mar 2, 2011

utterly smitten. that is all.

Chris Werner Photography on Mar 11, 2011

Creative weddings like this are such a great reminder of how personalized your ceremony can be! Very nicely done :)

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Oh my god.. look at the decor, man I can't even think of these ideas. Well very adorable and very simple... Awww.. its so lovely..

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