Pennsylvania Backyard Wedding: Katie + Ryan

greenhouse bride and groom

Katie + Ryan had a backyard wedding of pretty epic proportions. Held at Katie’s family home in Pennsylvania, their lovely, laid back celebration is guaranteed to inspire all of you newly engaged couples who are starting to plan a backyard soiree of your own! Katie + Ryan kept things simple, but stylish, by letting the beauty of their surrounding take the lead when it came to design and allowing the spring season to dictate many of the decor choices. This meant incorporating lots of pretty, natural elements like fun, wildflower-inspired bouquets for the bridal party and mini potted herbs serving as escort cards. And doesn’t Katie’s gorgeous, pink BHLDN dress feel like a perfect fit with the setting? It has such a beautiful springtime garden party feel! Here’s a bit more about the day from the newlyweds:

Since we were having the wedding in my family’s backyard, we wanted it to feel homey and authentic. We tried to keep it relaxed and fun, but also classy and sophisticated so that it really felt like something very special. We chose late May because that was when most of the flowers would be blooming on the property. Having the wedding at home made the whole experience feel that much more personal + intimate!

Big thanks to The Hurst’s for the beautiful photographs and congratulations to Katie + Ryan!

flower crown bridesmaids

flower girl

groomsmen

greenhouse

first look


Katie + Ryan’s sweet first look took place inside the property’s beautiful greenhouse. I’m pretty insanely jealous of this awesome backyard! Such a perfect spot to host a wedding…

greenhouse first look

first look

bride and groom

bride and groom


Love that their pup was a part of their day, too! :)

bride and groom

bride and groom

bride and groom

pennsylvania BHLDN bride

pink whimsical bouquet

bride and groom

bride and groom

heart wreath


Love n’ Fresh Flowers did such a pretty job with the floral design. Loving the heart-shaped wreath above + the farm chair bouquets below!

flowers

ceremony

ceremony

Our ceremony. We had the most wonderful officiate who wrote a beautiful ceremony for us. We had a week of non-stop rain leading up to the big day and the forecast for that day was damp and chilly. Just as we paused for a silent moment to remember loved ones who had past, the warm sun peeked through and shined down on us. It was one of those moments when you just know your life has lead you down the right path. It was a really beautiful moment.

ceremony

plant favors

plant favors

chalkboard menu


Dinner took place in the yard under a tent lit by string lights. Fun, mismatched vintage chairs + boxes and tins of herbs + flowers gave the setting a rustic, charming feel.

tent reception

boxed centerpieces

table numbers

wood plate setting

wood plate setting

grand entrance

naked cake

tent reception

greenhouse

wishing lanterns


And majorly love their fun wedding video by Tree of Life Films!

When in doubt, simplify. Try not to get too hung up on details and decision-making. Just go with your gut and what makes you happy. I read someplace that your wedding should feel like the biggest dinner party you’ll ever throw and that it should look and feel like yours and nobody else’s. This advice helped make our wedding feel genuine and really personal without being overly contrived.

photography: The Hurst’s // venue: Bride’s Family Home, Ambler, Pennsylvania // floral design + hairpieces: Love n’ Fresh Flowers // wedding dress: BHLDN // bridesmaid dresses: Urban Outfitters, Mod Cloth // hair + makeup: talented bridesmaid // groom suit: J. Crew // videography: Tree of Life Films // paper goods: Bride designed // catering: Birchtree Catering // cake: Belle Cakery // music: Ryan Tennis Music // tables and chair rentals: Maggpie Vintage Rentals // tent: Sperry Tents

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Destination Desert Elopement: Fran + Max

palm springs elopement

Fran + Max are from Berlin, but after deciding to escape the cold, rainy November weather in Germany, California seemed like the perfect place to not only exchange their vows, but start a “runaway tradition” in a place they can continue to visit for years to come. Love that idea! :) They packed a few clothes and a huge bundle of letters from their friends + family so that they’d have their nearest + dearest there with them in spirit. For the ceremony, the chose Indian Canyon in Palm Springs – a place that allowed them to truly enjoy the beauty + pureness of their desert surroundings. And after a sweet + intimate service, they headed back to The Parker Hotel to celebrate with cake + champagne! Here’s a bit more from Max about what they loved about deciding to elope:

The mixture of the easyness of a vons-cheescake-and-champagne catering and the importance of vows written, not for an audience, but simply for the two of us, made our day. The day after, we hit the road towards Arizona, finally ending up in Florida for an adventurous honeymoon we’ll never forget.

palm springs elopement

palm springs elopement

palm springs elopement


DAHLHAUS Foto did an amazing job of capturing Fran + Max’s day! I love these shots of their ceremony with nothing but desert landscape as far as the eye can see…

palm springs elopement

palm springs elopement

flower hair piece

palm springs elopement

palm springs elopement bride

palm springs elopement

groom

palm springs elopement

palm springs elopement

palm springs elopement


And as I’m sure you can tell, these two have some serious style! Fran wore such a cool dress by Supertrash, which she paired with Nike Airs! And Max looks awesome in his black Cos suit.

palm springs elopement

palm springs elopement

palm springs elopement

palm springs elopement

palm springs elopement

palm springs elopement

palm springs elopement

palm springs elopement

palm springs elopement

palm springs elopement


Big congrats to Max + Fran and best wishes from GWS! :)

photography: DAHLHAUS Foto // venue: Indian Canyon and The Parker Hotel Palm Springs, California // floral design + hairpieces: Some vietnamese flowershop somewhere in between filling out the papers in the County Center and the hotel :) // wedding dress: Supertrash // shoes: Nike Air (bride) + Cos (groom) // groom suit: Cos // jewelry: Cartier, Alex Monroe, vintage Mala from Rishikesh // hair + makeup: bride did herself

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Playful Montana Cabin Wedding: Jamie + Jake

bride and groom

Jamie + Jake are a super fun-loving couple who wanted their day to be just as silly + sweet as they are! They were married in a remote + magical setting that was close to both of their hearts: Jake’s family cabin on the banks of Montana’s Swan Lake. Jamie was the definition of a DIY bride, taking on so many projects that helped make their day special + unique. From tackling the floral design to hand-packagaing the guest favors to even designing her wedding dress, she (and Jake!) put so much thought and love into their celebration — and it totally shows.

More from Jamie: I am a serious lover of color, print, and pattern so I really just wanted to go for it! Colorwise, I took my inspiration from my surroundings. When Jake and I were first dating, he brought me to the cabin, and I just fell in love with everything — and well, him! At sunset, the mountains across the lake take on this beautiful purpley-plum hue. There is vibrant green moss all around the forest. The water has these turquoise and teal tones in the evening, and there are these lovely little mustard yellow wildflowers as you drive through the mountains. And of course, that big, bright blue Montana sky – there’s nothin’ like it! When Jake and I are vacationing at the cabin, I just find myself in this happy, stress-free, lovey-dovey state of being, and I wanted to extend that feeling into the wedding. I wanted our friends and family to feel that way.

Thanks a bunch to Love Is a Big Deal for the awesome photography + big congrats to Jamie + Jake!

mountain wedding

bride

bride

mountain bride

earrings

bridal hair piece


This note from Jamie to Jake made me smile BIG time! So, so sweet + funny!

groom note

bow tie groom

bow tie groom

embroidered letters


I’m crazy about all the lovely handmade signage incorporated into their day! Signage can play such a big part in the design of your wedding, so opting for fun, well-designed signs that represent the two of you can really take things to another level!

wedding camera rules

ceremony

ceremony

I will always, always remember how Jake’s vows made me feel. I was just so incredibly touched by his tenderness, his honesty – the tears that came streaming down his face within the first sentence. I couldn’t stop my own tears. Jake just put so much love into those words. And he was SO funny! It was such a perfect mixture of humor and heart, I guess I cried and laughed equally through the whole thing. It was just so beautiful. He is truly a beautiful man, inside and out. Tearing up now — ah!

ceremony

ceremony drink mixing

fabric strand backdrop

fabric strand backdrop

bride and groom

bride and groom

bride and groom


Love this shot of Jamie + Jake!

bride and groom

bride and groom

bride and groom

bride and groom

bride and groom

bride and groom


And how cute is this lounge area, staged in the back of an old pick-up truck?!

truck bed lounge

truck bed lounge

wooden tree signs


 I wanted things to be relaxed, warm, with just a touch of whimsy to remind everyone that they were definitely at OUR wedding. I knew when I was planning this shindig that I had to incorporate our brand of silliness. From the mismatched plates, linens, and glasses to the kitty cat salt and pepper shakers on top of our cake (we both love cats), there had to be some silliness going on. I also wanted us to diy as much of our decorations and details as we could. We both put so much of our blood, sweat, and tears into everything. Jake, with some great family help, even built our reception tables and benches!

woodland wedding reception

woodland wedding reception

tree trunk seats

vintage owl

mixed napkins


I made the wooden signs (I even used a saw!), our guest book, the flower garlands, the fabric letters, the Mr. and Mrs. chair swag, our favors, and all of the paper goods. It was a LOT of work (and hot glue gun burns)! But it was totally worth it. Those personal handmade touches made it feel so authentically Jake and Jamie, and I am so proud of us. It was truly our lovely, silly, sweet big day.

fabric strip backdrop

bar

wedding prints


Such an adorable cake topper! :)

wedding cake

guest book

honey favors

bride and groom

This is probably total blasphemy to say on Green Wedding Shoes - but at some point, you gotta stop looking at the beautiful blogs, Pinterest, wedding magazines, etc. I say that because narrowing down your inspirations and your “wants” is really, really hard. At some point, maybe halfway to the big day, go with what you’ve got. You’ll love what you’ve put together by then, so stick with that, or you may try to do so many things, you’ll overwhelm yourself (and others). And say thank you. Say thank you to everyone who helps you in any way. Say it so many times you go blue in the face. Also, make SURE that you take a moment to yourself to soak it all in. I stood on the steps of the cabin and watched all of our friends and family just having an absolute blast. I looked at my husband doing some really terrible dance moves, and just smiled. I still thank myself for those 5 minutes of pausing and observing it all.

photography: Love Is a Big Deal // venue: Groom’s family cabin on Swan Lake, Montana // event design + planning: Bride // florals: Tables and centerpieces diy by the bride, her man of honor, and friends // wedding dress: Design by the bride, handmade by Romantic Creations // hairpieces: January Rose Bridal // shoes: Jeffrey Campbell on ModCloth // bridesmaid dresses: Lane Bryant // hair + makeup: Diy by the bride // groom suit: J. Crew, tie fabric is from Spoonflower, and were made by a family friend // invitations: YellowBrickGraphics // paper goods: diy by the bride // catering: Rosauers (local grocery store) // cake: Ferndale Market (local grocery store) // music: The Fetveit Brothers

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