Nicole + Manny’s wedding could have possibly taken place where they got engaged, somewhere in the southern United States. They loved its charm, history and beauty, but their search quickly expanded to the Caribbean, then to Portugal. Don’t you just love how that can happen? This was his family from Portugal and hers from Romania were able to make it. Their wedding venue was obviously a beaut – Colunata Eventos, a picturesque garden on a mountain overlooking the city of Braga. And they didn’t let the venue do all the talking, oh no. The decor, florals, fashion, photography by Branco Prata… it was all just as romantic as could be.
With an all-lace Maggie Sottero dress, red bow heels, a tulle birdcage veil (made by mom), sweet short bob cut and an amazing little venue like Le San Michele, why wouldn’t you want to book your wedding photographer to also capture some model-esque photos of you and the dress? Love the idea. Love the photos by Kristi Wright Photography and simply adore bride-to-be, Kelsey, even if she thinks she’s 7 inches too short to take on modeling as a career.
From Kelsey: I’m very simple and I wanted to look like me. It’s my wedding day, so I wanted to make sure that I felt totally comfortable! When it came to the dress I wanted something that I could wear and not let wear me. I have a petite frame, so big tulle skirts and ruffles were out. The lace of the dress had the detail I wanted without being too over the top. The silhouette took my 5 foot 3 inches up a bit! In my mind it was absolutely perfect! I wanted fun shoes because they show the playful teacher side of me. As far as my hair and veil goes, I wanted something simple yet unique. I don’t like traditional veils, but I don’t like net birdcages either, so my mom made the tulle birdcage and it was perfect!
Here’s a bride that three years ago disconnected herself from the internet and phone and traded her stilettos for cowboy boots, all for a good old fashioned cowboy named Alain. Summed up in two words, Alain + Anna are “old souls”. They live comfortably on 160 acres of wild forest in a cabin nestled in the Great White North of British Columbia, Canada. Their time is divided between working, canning, crafting, gardening, clearing fields, and hunting to fill the freezer. Curious to see how their wedding turned out? (Spoiler alert – amazing). If it helps – every now and then a bride comes along that wow’s us with DIY details and sound planning advice. Today is one of those days and Anna is one of those brides.
After two failed attempts in dress stores where I was continuously brought stiff huge & crunchy dresses I arrived at Blush Bridal, in Victoria BC. They immediately got my concept of married in a field, dress must be flowy and natural and even made a custom floral strap to add to my Maggie Sottero Gown. As a cowboy boot bride, I went all out and bought beautiful Hand Tooled Lucchese boots. They were perfectly impractical for farm chores, and will always remain a special pair for that reason.
Marrying on our 160 Acre property in the Bulkley Valley meant our families coming together and meeting in the middle to start our new life which was very symbolic to us. The hardest part was narrowing down where it would take place! We ended up having the ceremony in a huge hayfield on the edge of our farm, in the middle of the original homestead. We considered building a new barn for the reception, but thankfully came to our senses and rented out a rural hall (complete with a one roomed schoolhouse!) for a steal of a deal at $350 for 3 days. It was perfect-rustic and rural with a full kitchen to enable our home cooked wedding feast!
They salvaged windows from their old barn and used them for ceremony signs, dinner and beverage menus. They made all the signage using typefaces from their invitations to really brand the day. As for their favors, seen below, those were quite an involved project. Bring that Anna is an obsessive gardener, what better than to ‘let the love grow’ and give out seeds as favors. She spent months collecting scrapbooking paper and making the seed envelopes.
With very limited choices for caterer’s we knew from the get go we were making it all ourselves. The menu was constantly evolving over the year and we were able to make things in advance like balsamic onion preserves, and wild rose petal ice cubes (picked when they first bloomed in the spring!). The day before our wedding, family members from both sides showed up at the hall to pitch in and assemble everything under the skilled direction of my sous-chef, sister.The spread included pulled pork, quinoa in a roasted red pepper reduction, calico bean pot, roasted corn & grape tomato salad with bacon, avocado, and balsamic reduction, french green beans with dijon and toasted almonds, my mom’s killer ceasar salad, and wood fired artisan rolls from Rustica Bakery.
Anna’s advice: My best budget tip would be to be decisive to the point of being ruthless. Know what you want and stick to it. Use your resources, use your family. Plan your projects within your wallet and time capacity, and hire the best vendors that you could possibly afford. We only hired one professional, Simply Rose Photography. Your family and friends are there because they love you and you have trust that they will be eager to jump at the chance to pitch in. Trust that when the wedding day comes you will never notice (or care) if the little things are a little out of place from your carefully drawn diagrams, you will care about one thing only – your vows and the start of your marriage with your wonderful husband. The fact that your family has surrounded you with limitless love and support to help make that start so strong will only make it more wonderful!
Congratulations Alain + Anna!
Photography: Simply Rose Photography / Venue: Private residence / Details & decor: Bride + family / Food: Cooked by family + friends / Bride’s dress: Maggie Sottero Gown / Bride’s earrings: La Petit Maison / Gold bangle + pearls: Family heirlooms / Feather hairpiece: made by sister of bride / Groom: J.Crew jacket, Wrangler jeans + shirt / Boutonnieres: The Thirsty Trout / Bridesmaid dresses: J.Crew + their own boots
From a nostalgic lakeside view to a light rustic and nautical theme, all the elements in Heather + Jeff’s wedding make it worthy of a firework ending. It was a day full of whimsical surprises; a flash sun-shower just as dinner was about to start, a striking rainbow, paper lanterns flying in the sky – you’d think we’d be making it up. In the end, this was a celebration that could not have been done without the help of friends (uber talented friends), who are either artists, event planners, designers and photographers. H + J are quite talents themselves. Heather is the photographer behind Oak Street Studio, and Jeff is an architect. Although they reside in sunny Los Angeles, their wedding took place in Jeff’s childhood home on Chebacco Lake in Essex, Massachusetts, embracing the natural beauty & charm of a small, rustic New England town.
Aren’t you loving their suite? They’re to credit for such a classic design. Inspired by Essex’s shipbuilding history and fishing industry, they incorporated a nautical theme into their invitation suite, and butcher paper placemat designs that you’ll see below. The back of the invitation included a map they drew of the Cape Anne area, based on historic nautical maps.
This is our first time sharing the song that played as the groom walked down the aisle, but we couldn’t help ourselves. The song is Heartbeats by Jose Gonzalez. It’s such an emotional song, and feel it perfectly sets the mood for the rest of their day. Listen to it here:
After the ceremony they took a pontoon boat ride around the lake with the bridal party. We love this!
The florals, a mix of muted tones, included large peonies and assorted wild flowers cut from the garden. They were assembled in various glass jars collected at a local antique shop over the course of a year. Take note of that Cakelets – if you love the antique glass jar vibe, start planning ahead and start collecting! It takes time to find different shapes, colors and sizes.
They scanned an antique print featuring a historic area ship, and printed it on butcher paper for the dinner placemats.
We decided to work with local caterer, Chive. They focus on farm-fresh produce and sustainability. Our menu included mixed-green salads, sliders, chilli-rubbed chicken legs, and a pickle bar. Drinks were local craft beers and cocktails with bourbon and local honey, served in drinking jars; which were also our gifts to the guests to remember the weekend. Dessert was an assortment of fresh summer fruit pies, made by a family friend who owns a bakery near to town.
We wanted to keep the feel inside the tent light and airy, and were inspired by feather glass balls seen at Catbird in Brooklyn. We bought clear holiday glass bulbs, filled them with various feathers, and hung them from shipping rope, amongst soft golden lights. Any Winter brides reading? We’re thinking this idea is perfect, and would look fabulous!
As it got dark, our friends lit an array of fireworks, we sent paper lanterns floating into the sky, and all enjoyed a bright orange moon reflecting on the lake. It was a simple, yet magical New England summer occasion, and we are forever thankful to all of our family and friends who were there with us to enjoy it.
The creatively-charged details of Rosemary and Micah’s big day, along with the supreme talents of photog Erin Hearts Court, make this wedding one event you can’t help but adore. We’re amazed at the amount of intricately crafted little tidbits, including handmade pinwheels (gorgeous, for real), ceramic bouquet tags and fly-fishing embellished boutonnieres, all inspired by their color palette of corals, peaches, golds and blues – the essence of California in the springtime!
The ceremony took place in the Little Bridges music hall at Pomona College, the tiny Southern California liberal arts college that both bride and groom both attended, followed by a glowing reception in the campus ballroom, built in the 1930s. So perfect.
The ring-on-the-sweet photo is cuter than words, not to mention that exquisite bouquet, complete with ceramic tags made by the bride!
Rosemary handknit this gorgeous chuppah for their ceremony using Micah’s grandmother’s vintage linen napkins. Micah got into the DIY-action and made the chuppah poles – truly a labor of love that will live on forever. So, so romantic.
We’re totally impressed by Rosmary, who cranked her creativity to the max and crafted all the paper goods including signage, cocktail flags and programs. She also made paper lanterns using using scanned prints of matching fabric found in the LA garment district. Amazing!
This is such a fantastic idea for notes from guests – and how fun it must have been to read them!
If you’re like us, you may need to stop for a sec to take in this beautiful shot. The uber-talented bride handmade (of course) these gorgeous pinwheels – so imaginative and playful! Not to mention, that dessert table…. full of cakes, pies and about a gajillion varieties of cookie, made by the groom’s cousin.
Rosemary, who has a love for pottery, also made some delightful vases that were mixed in with mason jars to make these lavishly sweet centerpieces.
Looks like a match made in heaven. Congrats Rosemary and Micah, on your marriage and on a beautiful event!