When we started asking brides and grooms for more information about their weddings, with the hope of offering even more inspiration to our dear readers, I was a little afraid that no one would want to take the time to share so much! I have been pleasantly surprised by all of the amazing stories we’ve received, like this thoughtful wedding from Maura and Aidan. Not only did they share tons of information about their planning and the day, they also shared their full budget breakdown and wedding ceremony! Get ready to be inspired to create a beautiful, meaningful wedding day…

SEE THE GALLERY FOR EVEN MORE IMAGES FROM THIS RUSTIC FALL WEDDING BY LARA KIMMERER.

Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink

 

The Venue

“We wanted to get married in Western Massachusetts, where Aidan grew up. We also were interested in having a barn wedding on a farm with historic, beautiful buildings. We also liked the idea of having multiple locations all within one venue, such as the apple orchard, farmhouse, barn, and patio. We knew that we wanted a very big wedding and it was difficult to find a farm with all of these elements. Quonquont Farm had all of the things we were looking for, and as soon as we saw it we knew we wanted to get married there.”

 

Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink
Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink
Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink

 

The Ceremony

“We wanted to incorporate some of the wonderful traditions of a Jewish wedding ceremony,” share Maura and Aidan. “We had a lovely and intimate Ketubah (Jewish marriage contract) signing in the farmhouse with a small circle of close friends and family who surrounded us as we signed the document that formally married us according to Jewish law. Our officiant, Ben, in his wonderful way said to the folks in the room, ‘Shh, don’t tell the others but this is the real wedding!’ It was incredibly special and emotional for all of us, especially since the words on the Ketubah were so wonderful.”

 

Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink
Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink

 

Your ceremony in three words.  Personal, Emotional, Hand-crafted.

How did you go about planning your wedding ceremony?  Maura’s cousin, Ben, officiated our wedding, and we worked with him to craft a ceremony that felt meaningful to us. Ben is insightful and compassionate while maintaining levity and humor, and he has a unique way of connecting people and bringing them together. We knew he would be wonderful to work with. We also worked with a local rabbi in Boston who helped advise us on our wedding and preparing for marriage. It felt important to bring in traditional Jewish wedding elements, while honoring people in both of our families and connecting with each other.  Our ceremony involved several objects of significance to both of us, including a chuppah that was handmade by Aidan’s mother, a tallis that was given to Aidan on the day he converted to Judaism, a prayer book that was handed down from Maura’s relatives, and a kiddush cup that Maura and Aidan purchased together.

 

Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink
Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink
Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink
Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink
Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink

 

What was your favorite thing about your wedding ceremony?  Surprisingly being indoors at the last minute wound up being so wonderful. The day was muggy and buggy and threatening to storm, and the barn was beautiful – and air-conditioned. Beyond the sheer comfort of this last-minute decision, the barn had been completely set up for just the dinner reception, not for a seated ceremony. Orchestrated by our amazing day-of coordinator, Jen, and venue manager, Jenelle, all of the guests chipped in to move the room around to fill the space with seating. By the time we walked down the aisle, less than 30 minutes later, the room was filled with this wonderful energy and feeling of real community. There was a point in the ceremony, just after our vows, where we turned to face our guests for them to affirm our commitment to one another and their commitment to stand by us to support our marriage. Looking through the room at this wonderful array of our community of friends and family was simply perfection.

 

Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink
Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink
Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink

 

Ceremony music:
Processional: “Kneel Before Him” by Chris Thile
Recessional: All I Want Is You” by Barry Louis Polisar

What were your ceremony readings?  No readings, but we revamped the seven blessings tradition. Each prayer was recited in Hebrew by our officiant, and then a close friend or family member shared a blessing in English that they had written for us, wishing us a marriage filled with: Stewardship, Balance, Partnership, Nourishment, Friendship, Adventure, and Learning. We hadn’t heard the words that people had written before they were said aloud during the ceremony and it was an incredibly touching and intimate experience.

What were your vows like?  We each wrote our own vows. There was no real formula except that we began by affirming our love for one another. We didn’t rehearse them, so we heard each others’ words for the first time under the chuppah.

READ MAURA AND AIDAN’S FULL WEDDING CEREMONY RIGHT HERE.

 

Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink
Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink

 

Is there anything else that you’d like to share about your wedding ceremony?  There’s a wonderful Jewish wedding custom that right after the ceremony, the couple sneaks off to enjoy their first moments of marriage privately by sharing a small meal. Having the wonderful interlude in the midst of the hubbub of this crazy-amazing day was an incredible treat. We shared some delicious snacks and popped open a bottle of champagne to celebrate during our private little picnic in the middle of the orchard. It was really magical to spend a few quiet moments just the two of us.

 

Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink
Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink

 

The Reception

“We thought a lot about just how special it is to have all of the important people in each of our lives together to witness and celebrate our commitment to one another. We really wanted it to feel like a celebration of love and of our communities coming together. We’re lucky to have so many incredibly talented people among our friends and family so we didn’t have to look far to accomplish a ‘do-it-OURselves’ wedding – a far more collective version of DIY. Our wedding was really and truly a team effort with almost every guest lending a hand in some way to make the day a reality. From lending skills as a floral designer, to arriving early the morning of the wedding to help us set the tables, to serving as an amateur (if amazingly natural) emcee/DJ for the night, to baking a pie to share, we had so many people involved in one way or another. To us, that was really special.”

 

Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink
Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink

 

Your reception in three words. Hand-crafted, Playful, Lively.

What inspired you when you were planning your wedding?  We were super inspired by the naked beauty of the spaces at Quonquont Farm. We had the farmhouse to get ready, the gorgeous early fall apple orchard for pictures, a lovely patio for cocktail hour and the beautiful restored dairy barn for the ceremony and reception. The “bones” of all of these spaces were breathtaking and all our decor choices were intended to showcase the architecture in its wonderful simplicity.

Did you include any traditions in your wedding?  We did include something old, something new, something borrowed, and something blue. For something old, we each held embroidered handkerchiefs hand-sewn by Maura’s great-grandmother throughout our day. For something new, Maura had a new lace headpiece and Aidan had a new yarmulke. For something borrowed, Maura wore pearl earrings from her aunt. And for something blue, Aidan’s father drove him to the farm in his vintage restored 1940 Ford Truck, painted in Bahama Blue.

Are there any DIY details you’d like to tell us about?  Oh, so many! It all began with our Save the Date, a stop-motion animation made with Bananagrams, and continued through the whole wedding! Aidan designed several large rubber stamps that we used to hand print our invitations. Aidan’s mom sewed our chuppah, which she is in the process of making into a quilt for us, and she also cut and hemmed beautiful cloth napkins. We made bags for the kids in attendance (each contained a personalized coloring and activity book, bubbles, crayons, farm animal tattoos, and handmade pinwheels). Maura’s aunt has long-adored family collection of kooky salt shakers which she passed on to us in the lead up to the wedding and we carefully selected a shakers to place on each of the tables. And all the beer – finding used bottles which was quite the group effort, removing labels and sanitizing, and then on to the fun part of brewing the beer and Aidan putting his graphic design skills to work creating amazing “limited edition” labels. Not to mention the flowers, favors, mismatched silverware, pie buffet…

 

Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink
Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink

 

What was your favorite moment or part of the reception?  We both agree that our favorite moment of the reception was at the end of the Hora, which is a dance where the couple is raised above the guests on chairs. After the dance ends, there is a Jewish tradition where the couple is entertained by the guests. Picture a large crowd surrounding the couple, and every few seconds one of the guests spontaneously juggles, does a crazy dance move, or performs a magic trick! And the entire time, loud, fast music is playing and people are laughing and clapping. It all happened so fast that it was a blur, but we’ll never forget it.

First Dance Song: “One Voice” by The Wailin’ Jennys. During the last verse we invited all the couples who celebrate an anniversary around ours to join us on the dance floor. We didn’t have a father/daughter or mother/son dance per se, but we had a wonderful special performance that took its place. Our fathers are both musicians and they played together – Aidan’s dad on guitar, Maura’s on mandolin. They played “To the Love of My Life” by Jay Ungar.

 

Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink
Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink

 

Did you have a signature cocktail?  We brewed all of our own beer for the wedding, and designed custom labels for each type of beer. We had four types of beer (Barnhouse Brown, 1940 Ford I.P.A., Lovebird Lager, and Orchard Red Ale), and a friend also brewed two signature non-alcoholic drinks: a delicious ginger beer and root beer.

Tell us about the food served at your wedding?  Having really flavorful, locally-sourced appetizers and dinner was really important to us, especially Maura who works to promote local, sustainable food systems. We had a beautiful menu featuring seasonal produce available in Massachusetts and honored our farmers by listing them on a chalkboard along the buffet line.

What about dessert?  In addition to a small cake for a ceremonial cake cutting (and to freeze for a one year anniversary treat), a group of our guests put together a gorgeous spread of potluck pies from our guests for dessert. Maura’s best friend Leigh compiled a book of all the recipes and gave it to us for our one year anniversary. Highlights included Salted Honey Pie, Blueberry Peach Pie, Whole Wheat Triple Berry Pie and Bourbon Pecan Chocolate Pie. Not that we got to taste any of them, we were far too busy having fun to take a break! We’re baking our way through the cookbook as a way to relive the wonderful day.

Any other details?  From the locally-sourced food to the use of compostable materials, we’re proud to say that our wedding was very close to being zero waste!

What was the best advice you received as a bride (as a couple)?  In the throes of planning, when I was concerned about ensuring that everyone will have a good time, someone finally mentioned that people will have a good time – as long as you’re happy and there’s enough food!

What advice do you have for other couples in the midst of planning a wedding?  Have a day-of wedding coordinator, no matter how DIY your wedding is.  This could be someone you hire, we had a friend who’s done a bunch of event planning and really loves it.  We comped her hotel room and paid for her travel to the wedding.  She was amazing! Just make sure it’s a friend who’ll enjoy this role. (If it’s a friend, make sure it’s someone who’ll embrace and enjoy this duty and build in time/space for them to experience the wedding for themselves too!)

If you had it to do over again, is there anything you would do differently?  Not stress about the weather so much! We had a good rain plan in place, and in the end, it was so much better that we ended up inside, so we really didn’t need to spend so much time in the week leading up to the wedding worrying about whether or not the ceremony could be held outdoors.

 

Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink
Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink Lara Kimmerer | Snippet & Ink

 

Is there anything else that helps tell the story of your wedding?  As we were thinking of starting our own little family, we really felt like we wanted to share a name that we both felt connected to and we happened upon the name Ackerman which felt right from the start! On the most basic level Ackerman is an amalgam of Aidan’s patrilinial name (Acker) and my matrilinial name (Feldman). Honoring both sides of our new family and the lineage of both our mothers and our fathers feels very powerful to us. / Ackerman has a meaning that rings true for both of us. Literally, Acker comes from the German for “field” or “acre,” thus Ackerman has the connotation of caretaker or steward of the land which jives well with each of our life’s work (Maura’s in agriculture and Aidan’s in landscape architecture). / Finally, Ackerman has a decidedly Jewish ring to it which feels good as we approach building a Jewish home and life together. Choosing a shared Jewish last name will also serve as a reminder of the choice we have made to embrace Judaism.

Photography: Lara Kimmerer / Venue: Quonquont Farm in Whately, Massachusetts / Event Planning, Design, Coordination: the couple, Jennifer Lawrence  / Dress: LulaKate / Ceremony Shoes: Kiss & Tell / Reception Shoes: Miz Mooz / Suit: Macy’s / Floral Design: Eliza Gray Gardens / Rentals: Northhampton Rental / Catering: Heirloom Catering / Ketubah: Urban Collective / Cake: King Arthur Flour
SEE THE FULL GALLERY
  • Quonquont Farm Wedding by Lara Kimmerer

    29 October 2014
  • 0 comments posted +add a comment SEE MORE: Real Weddings

    Jordan and Taylor were wed on the bride’s grandparents’ farm – an easy choice of venue once you see these photos from Mandy Busby. The bride’s lush oversize bouquet, the charming stationery suite, the Southern tradition of burying a bottle of bourbon to ward of rain… so much inspiration in this sweet home Alabama wedding!

    SEE THE GALLERY FOR EVEN MORE PHOTOS FROM THIS ROMANTIC FARM WEDDING FROM MANDY BUSBY.

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    The stationery suite by Signora e Mare featured calligraphy in rich brown ink on cream white paper.

     

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    Mandy Busby | Snippet & Ink Mandy Busby | Snippet & Ink

     

    The Ceremony

    “Taylor and I chose to have our wedding at my grandparents’ farm right outside of Gadsden, Alabama,” says Jordan. “Once we knew that getting married at the farm was even a possibility, it was such an easy decision. Their farm has always been such a special place to me. I’ve grown up celebrating birthday parties and many other things at the farm, so it felt very natural to celebrate our wedding there, too. It was such an amazing feeling to have all of our closest family and friends there with us on our big day.”

     

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    Your ceremony in three words.  Peaceful, Sweet, Joyous.

    What was your favorite thing about your wedding ceremony?  Taking Communion with Taylor as our first act of marriage was a very special moment during our wedding ceremony. It was such a great way to reflect on the importance of the day and how we want to honor Christ throughout our marriage. Another memorable moment of our ceremony was when a group of birds flew directly over us. It made me really thankful that we decided to have an outdoor wedding to showcase the beauty of nature on the farm!

    What was your favorite moment or part of the day?  There were so many wonderful things about our wedding day that it’s terribly difficult to narrow down to just one favorite. One of the moments that we often look back on was immediately following the ceremony when our wedding party surrounded us as we toasted a glass of Prosecco in celebration of our marriage. We can’t think of a more fun occasion and sense of togetherness than what we received in that moment.

     

     

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    The Reception

    “Taylor and I were most inspired by the farm and by the overall atmosphere we wanted to create for our wedding. We felt very strongly about having it feel simple and laid back while still maintaining a sense of elegance, and for our guests to feel relaxed and comfortable. We also wanted everything to feel as though it was a natural extension of the farm, so we chose details that felt organic and pastoral.”

     

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    Signature Drink:  “Hoppily Ever After” home brew IPA
    Cake: Strawberry and Vanilla Cake with Buttercream Frosting
    First Dance Song:  “Into the Mystic” by Van Morrison

    Did you include any traditions in your wedding?  While our wedding was in an unconventional setting, we didn’t stray too far from the good ole Southern wedding traditions. Perhaps, the most southern of them all was burying a bottle of bourbon a month before the wedding to ward off rain on our big day!

    Please tell us about any special details from your wedding.  Our amazing wedding planner, Ginny Au, did a phenomenal job of incorporating natural elements of the farm into the decorations. She foraged plants the day before the wedding and found a gorgeous vine that was used inside of the barn. It was so wonderful to have a piece of the farm incorporated into the decor of the wedding to go along with the stunning floral arrangements done by our florist, Katie McDaniel of Cloth of Gold. Another very special, personal detail was wearing my late grandmother’s dinner ring as my something old. It meant a lot to me to be able wear something that reminded me of her and my late grandfather (her husband) since they weren’t able to be there in person.

    What was the best advice you received as a bride?  The best advice I received was to take the time to really enjoy every moment of the day and to avoid getting wrapped up in the hustle and bustle of everything, because it really does go by so quickly. Those special moments that I made a conscious effort to soak in will always bring back such sweet memories. I can vividly remember the feeling I had when I was walking down to where our ceremony took place, and being so excited to marry my best friend and grateful that everyone we loved the most was there to celebrate with us! It was truly the best.

    What advice do you have for other couples in the midst of planning a wedding?  Try not to get stressed out. I know, I know… easier said than done, but I absolutely promise everything will be worth it in the end. It is truly the best day of your life, and no matter what little stresses come up along the way, they will seem insignificant when you are surrounded by your family and friends celebrating your marriage. It’s a wonderful time!

     

    Mandy Busby | Snippet & Ink Mandy Busby | Snippet & Ink
    Photography: Mandy Busby / Event Planning & Design: Ginny Au / Venue: Private Farm in Gadsden, Alabama / Dress: Francesca Miranda via White Dresses Boutique / Shoes: Kate Spade / Earrings: White Dresses Boutique / Suit: Indochino / Bridesmaid Dresses, Groom’s Tie: J. Crew / Groomsmen Attire: Jos A Bank / Stationery, Artwork, Calligraphy: Signora e Mare / Envelopes: Script Merchant Calligraphy and Design / Floral Design: Cloth of Gold / Rentals: Top Notch Rentals / Music: Will and Jeanetter Hightower, The Carmonas / Catering: Kathy G. Catering / Cake: Diane Steward, Rainbow Manor Wedding Chapel
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  • Romantic Alabama Farm Wedding by Mandy Busby

    27 October 2014
  • 0 comments posted +add a comment SEE MORE: Real Weddings

    Joyce and Stephen’s magical wedding at Barnsley House included 25 guests, 2 gowns, and countless flowers. Snippet & Ink Select vendor Catherine Mead captured the day beautifully…

    SEE THE GALLERY FOR MORE IMAGES FROM THIS INTIMATE GARDEN WEDDING BY CATHERINE MEAD.

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    The bride’s loose bouquet looked as though it was just picked from the surrounding gardens, and featured roses, astilbe, and greens.

     

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    Catherine Mead | Snippet & Ink Catherine Mead | Snippet & Ink

     

    The Ceremony

     

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    Your ceremony in three words.  Soft, Ethereal, Calm.

    What was your favorite thing about your wedding ceremony?  The antique altar arrangements done by Zita Elze Flowers, and the lovely architecture of the Gothic Summer House at the Barnsley House. So perfect.

     

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    The Reception

     

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    Why did you choose this location for your wedding?  I am a florist and Stephen is a landscape architect. Barnsley House was the perfect place for us, with its amazing flower garden and structured and inspiring landscape designs.

    What inspired you when you were planning your wedding?  It was very much about flowers and plants – we wanted an ethereal look for our wedding.

    What was your favorite moment or part of the day?  When we were holding hands coming out from our bridal suite passing through the garden, and then entering the reception dinner!

    Please tell us about any special details from your wedding. The little floral favor stand created by Zita Elze. // The ceremony aisle bordered with delphinium, astilbe and potted plants. // The pink ruffled cake by The Cake Parlour, topped with my favorite flowers.

    What advice do you have for other couples in the midst of planning a wedding?  To really look for a dream venue of your choice! It sets the stage for the entire celebration.

     

    Catherine Mead | Snippet & Ink Catherine Mead | Snippet & Ink

    Photography: Catherine Mead / Venue, Catering: Barnsley House in Gloucestershire, United Kingdom / Officiant: Diana Saxby / Ceremony Dress: Annasul Y / Reception Dress: Oscar de la Renta / Shoes: Jimmy Choo, Sergio Rossi / Suit: Massimo Dutti / Bow Tie: Armani / Hair, Makeup: Vanessa O Studio / Floral Design: Zita Elze / Cake: The Cake Parlour / Videography: Hugh Farrow Films
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  • Barnsley House Wedding from Catherine Mead

    22 October 2014
  • 11 comments posted +add a comment SEE MORE: Real Weddings

    Beautiful photos of fun details are incredibly inspiring, but we’re always so tickled when a couple goes above and beyond just sharing their photos, and shares details of their ceremony and their budget – knowing the specifics of how someone else did it can make planning so much easier! Big thanks to Heather and Brady for sharing their full wedding ceremony and their budget breakdown (in addition to their gorgeous photos!).

    SEE THE GALLERY FOR MORE IMAGES FROM THIS BLACK AND WHITE WEDDING FROM RUTH EILEEN.

    Ruth Eileen Photography | Snippet & Ink Ruth Eileen Photography | Snippet & Ink
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    The Ceremony

    “We had our dog, Nicholas, walk down the aisle with Brady,” says Heather. “We weren’t sure how this would work out, but he is generally a very calm dog so we went for it. I had seen him and Brady before the ceremony for photos so he got his excitement out then and when he got to the altar area he immediately made himself comfortable, laying down in the grass, and watching as the bridesmaids and then my Dad and I walked down the aisle. He didn’t get up or pull away, he just lied there watching intently. When everyone was in place and the ministers started speaking, he stretched out behind Brady and went to sleep! At one point in the ceremony, the ministers mentioned him, and Brady and I turned around to see him sound asleep behind us and we, along with everyone else, started laughing. He was a perfect four-legged groomsman and it made us so happy to have him there with us.”

     

    Ruth Eileen Photography | Snippet & Ink Ruth Eileen Photography | Snippet & Ink
    Ruth Eileen Photography | Snippet & Ink Ruth Eileen Photography | Snippet & Ink
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    Your ceremony in three words.  Thoughtful, Personal, Happy.

    How did you go about planning your wedding ceremony?  Brady’s aunt and uncle were our ministers. They had married his two older siblings already and we knew they were the perfect choice for us as well. The ceremony and sermon were so much more personal and we were more relaxed in their presence. They sent us their basic wedding template with two variations on the ritual, as well as some recommended readings common for weddings. We used one scripture reading from their list, and chose one that is not as commonly used in weddings (Ruth 1:16-17), but we thought the words and sentiment fit our lifestyle perfectly. We also chose to add two non-scripture readings that were perfect for the occasion and they obliged, even including one as a basis for the sermon. We decided to combine our own personal written vows with traditional vows and they turned out perfectly.

    What was your favorite thing about your wedding ceremony?  The vows, easily! Brady and I wrote our own but followed the same format so that the personal words and promises were a surprise to each other, but we also knew we were on the same page. We started with a brief history and a few kind words, then on to personal promises, and then we added the traditional vows. We each ended with “It was always you, [Brady/Heather]. It will always be you.” The last line was something I wrote down soon after we got engaged and knew I had to have in my vows. I couldn’t help sharing it with Brady and he wanted to use it too. It perfectly wrapped up our vows and tied them together.

    READ HEATHER AND BRADY’S FULL WEDDING CEREMONY AND VOWS RIGHT HERE.

     

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    The Reception

    “Brady and I met in high school in 2001. We went to Brady’s senior prom together and then parted ways as he went off to college and then started a career in the Navy, while I went on to nursing school. But we always kept in touch and met up every year for dinner around Christmas when he was in town. In 2009 our dinner together felt different and I wondered why I kept letting him go. After that we started to talk daily. He was living in Mississippi and I was living in Massachusetts. I made my first trip to visit him in April 2009 to see if it was more than friendship (it was!) and eventually moved to live by him in February 2010. Since then, we’ve lived in four states (and are moving again at the end of this year). Needless to say, our wedding was a long time coming and we enjoyed every last second. We spent the night on the dance floor. Our feet hurt, my gown was filthy, my hair was a mess. The first thing we did when we got back to our room was sit on the edge of the tub and soak our poor feet while eating the snacks that our caterer left for us! Despite the stress and anxiety a wedding can bring, we’d do it again in a heartbeat. It was that good.”

     

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    Your ceremony in three words.  SO MUCH FUN!

    What inspired you when you were planning your wedding?  A vintage crystal decanter! It was the first piece I saw that set in motion the rest of our plans. I was over-inspired, if that’s possible, by magazines, blogs and Pinterest and my head was spinning with all the possibilities and color schemes and themes available. When I saw the crystal decanter, my brain slowed down a little and started thinking about how I could incorporate it. From there, everything else started to fall into place: a loose theme of “Elegant Barn Wedding” and colors, flowers, decor all started falling into place.

     

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    Why did you choose this location for your wedding?  Chickens, newborn goats, sheep, wild turkeys, a garden full of peonies, lilac trees. It’s so hard to choose one reason why the farm appealed to us! Every inch of Mount Hope Farm is charming and beautiful, when we first visited it felt like we stumbled into a dream. We knew we wanted an outdoor wedding in New England and it perfectly fit the bill and truly felt like us. We were able to rent every room on the farm and have most of our family stay there as well, turning our wedding weekend into a perfect family getaway.

    Menu:
    Signature Cocktail: Cucumber Margarita with a Tajin Rim // Passed Hors d’Oeuvres: Mini Lobster Rolls / Deviled Eggs / Shrimp Cocktail Shots / Goat Cheese Rounds / Mini Lamb Chops // Starter: Ceasar Salad // Main Course: Delmonico Grille Marinated Ribeye Steak with Red Onion Balsamic Marmalade and Cabernet Au Jus, served with Yukon Potato Wedges, and Broccolini with Red Peppers / Pan Seared Local Scallops with Sundried Tomato Chardonnay Cream, served with Creamy Orzo with Mushrooms and Scallions, and Vegetable Batons / Wild Mushroom Ravioli // Dessert: Various Miniature Sweets / Cotton Candy / Chocolate Wedding Cake

    Reception Entrance Song: Happy by Pharrell Williams
    First Dance Song:  A Little More You by Little Big Town

     

    Ruth Eileen Photography | Snippet & Ink Ruth Eileen Photography | Snippet & Ink
    Ruth Eileen Photography | Snippet & Ink Ruth Eileen Photography | Snippet & Ink
    Ruth Eileen Photography | Snippet & Ink Ruth Eileen Photography | Snippet & Ink
    Ruth Eileen Photography | Snippet & Ink Ruth Eileen Photography | Snippet & Ink
    Ruth Eileen Photography | Snippet & Ink Ruth Eileen Photography | Snippet & Ink

     

    What was your favorite moment or part of the day?  Hearing Brady’s vows sits very high on the list. Also, looking up at my dad when the song for us to walk out to came on and laughing our way down the aisle between tears. The nervous feeling in my gut watching from an inside window as seats started to fill up and then noticing that close friends who we didn’t think would make it were there! The pure joy I felt during our first dance and singing every word of the song to each other. So many good thoughts, I can’t choose!

    Did you include any traditions in your wedding?  We actually decided to forego a lot of traditions for our wedding. Brady serves in the U.S. Navy and it is a huge part of our lives but we didn’t want it to define our wedding, so we left the uniforms, swords, and traditions at home and instead hung a huge American Flag above the fireplace, a simple but bold nod to our life and our country. We also skipped the church wedding, saw each other throughout the day before the wedding, and spent cocktail hour with our guests instead of off taking photos.

    Please tell us about any special details from your wedding.  Instead of a traditional guest book, we opted for something we could hang on our wall and see daily. I designed a Quaker style marriage certificate, which we had everyone sign as witnesses to our vows that day. // My great uncle Ernie played a few songs on the accordion for us during dinner! // At the bottom of our menus it read “No chickens were harmed in the making of this meal.” (We raise chickens at home for eggs and entertainment!)

     

    Ruth Eileen Photography | Snippet & Ink Ruth Eileen Photography | Snippet & Ink

     

    What was the best advice you received as a bride?  Sneak away for a few private moments together sometime after the ceremony to take it all in! We did this during the salad course of dinner and got a second to talk to each other as well as a few great pictures as the sun was going down without an audience. Also, focus on your groom and smile as you walk down the aisle! It helped to keep me from being overwhelmed by all of the people watching. My dad and I cracked a few jokes to laugh through the tears and then made our way down to Brady with big smiles on our face. // Eat something before the wedding and save a snack for after it. Also, don’t drink too much; you’ll want to remember this night!

    What advice do you have for other couples in the midst of planning a wedding?  I cannot explain enough how great it was to see each other before the ceremony and going to take photos. We had a private few moments to take it all in and calm our nerves. It didn’t take away from walking down the aisle AT ALL. I was still in tears and my heart was racing as we made our way to my groom. Then we got to spend an extra hour with family and friends on the beautiful grounds, enjoying the hors d’oeuvres and drinks we spent so much time planning! Also, I recommend that you practice bustling your dress with your bridesmaids beforehand. It took a bit longer than we hoped and wasn’t quite done right, but it worked out in the end!

     

    Photography: Ruth Eileen / Venue: Mount Hope Farm in Bristol, Rhode Island / Dress: Nina by Hayley Paige via The Bridal Garden / Shoes: Michael Kors / Jewelry: Nadri via Nordstrom / Suit, Cuff Links, Pocket Square: Banana Republic / Shirt: J. Crew / Tie: Men’s Warehouse / Shoes: Florsheim / Bridesmaid Dresses: Bill Levkoff via Special Events Bridal Shop / Dog’s Attire: Silly Buddy / Stationery: Green Fingerprint / Calligraphy: Ali Makes Things / Floral Design: Robin Hollow Farm / Catering, Cake, Rentals: Russell Morin Fine Catering / Music: Fivestar Entertainment DJ / Videography: Nathan Gomes, Blueflash Photography
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  • Mount Hope Farm Wedding from Ruth Eileen

    20 October 2014
  • 6 comments posted +add a comment SEE MORE: Real Weddings

    The Palace Garden Court is one of the most magical places in San Francisco – utterly timeless in its elegance! And the perfect setting for Hillary and Greg’s classic formal wedding, brought to life by Select vendor Stacy McCain Event Planning. Some of our favorite details about this black tie celebration? The ceremony included a love letter from the bride’s grandfather to her grandmother, the tables were adorned with white flowers and cut glass hurricanes, and the cake was topped with a charming vintage bride and groom…

    SEE THE GALLERY FOR ALL OF THE IMAGES FROM THIS BLACK TIE WEDDING AT THE PALACE GARDEN COURT.

    Stacy McCain, Palace Garden Court | Snippet & Ink Stacy McCain, Palace Garden Court | Snippet & Ink
    Stacy McCain, Palace Garden Court | Snippet & Ink Stacy McCain, Palace Garden Court | Snippet & Ink
    Stacy McCain, Palace Garden Court | Snippet & Ink Stacy McCain, Palace Garden Court | Snippet & Ink
    Stacy McCain, Palace Garden Court | Snippet & Ink Stacy McCain, Palace Garden Court | Snippet & Ink

     

    The Ceremony

    “San Francisco is where we fell in love, got engaged and started our first home together, so it felt very fitting that we should marry each other here as well. Calvary Presbyterian is located just a few short blocks from our home, so we knew it would be a part of our every day lives for a long time to come.”

     

    Stacy McCain, Palace Garden Court | Snippet & Ink Stacy McCain, Palace Garden Court | Snippet & Ink
    Stacy McCain, Palace Garden Court | Snippet & Ink Stacy McCain, Palace Garden Court | Snippet & Ink

     

    Your ceremony in three words.  Heartfelt, Traditional, Personal.

    How did you go about planning your wedding ceremony?  We asked our closest friends and family for their advice and wove together many loving stories to create our own ceremony. As a whole, our ceremony was quite traditional; we felt that so many generations of love stories before us had been married this way, we wanted to use the same symbols and messages to bless our day. For our vows, we asked our parents what their vows had been at their own weddings and used them to dictate our own, so they were also very traditional.

    Ceremony Music:
    Prelude: Flower Duet / Air by Bach / Thais Act II Meditation by Jules Massenet / Orchestral Suite No. 3 in D Major
    Processional: “Le Cygne” Camille Saint-Saens / Canon in D by Pacabel
    Bridal Processional: Bridal Chorus by Wagner
    Recessional: Wedding March by Medelssohn
    Also, my dear family friends sang a duet of Ave Maria during the ceremony that was entirely too beautiful to describe.

    Ceremony Readings:  My grandfather and Greg’s sister read Ruth 1:16-17 and Mark 10:6-9 – we chose them for their messages of unity, support and love.

    What was your favorite thing about your wedding ceremony?  Rev. Truly read a love letter my grandfather had written during the war to my grandmother exactly 70 years ago to the day, the very same day of our wedding. He had recently passed away and my brother had found the letter shortly thereafter. My grandparents’ love for one another was the everlasting kind, and when she read it, it felt like he was there blessing the day.

     

    Stacy McCain, Palace Garden Court | Snippet & Ink Stacy McCain, Palace Garden Court | Snippet & Ink

     

    The Reception

    “We loved the history behind the hotel and the romance of the Garden Court. It was one of the few places that could hold our large guest list but still feel intimate. Our reception was absolutely magical, filled with every person we love…and a great band!”

     

    Stacy McCain, Palace Garden Court | Snippet & Ink Stacy McCain, Palace Garden Court | Snippet & Ink
    Stacy McCain, Palace Garden Court | Snippet & Ink Stacy McCain, Palace Garden Court | Snippet & Ink

     

    What was your favorite moment or part of the reception?  Walking into a room filled with all of our friends and family, there was just so much love and happiness in one room. Also seeing my grandfather, Frank, out on the dance floor all night – he may have been the oldest person in the room, but he was also the last one to leave the dance floor.

    What was your first dance song? Father/daughter or mother/son dance?
    First Dance: “Make Someone Happy” by Jimmy Durante
    Father Daughter / Mother/Son Dance “The Way You Look Tonight” by Steve Tyrell

    Please tell us about any other special details or moments from your reception.  My brother was one of the best men, which was very special to both Greg and me.

     

    Stacy McCain, Palace Garden Court | Snippet & Ink Stacy McCain, Palace Garden Court | Snippet & Ink

     

    Menu:
    Passed Hors d’Oeuvres: Warm Date with Blue Cheese and Bacon / Thai Spring Roll, Mint, Carrot, Sprouts / Tuna Tartar on Wonton Crisp with Avocado and Chives // First Course: Caprese Salad with Heirloom Tomatoes, Fresh Mozzarella, Basil, Micro Greens, Chive Oil, Sonoma Saba, Avocado // Entree: Seared Center Cut Filet Mignon with Red Wine Demiglace, Roasted Spring Vegetables, Potatoes au Gratin // Dessert: Wedding Cake

    Did you have a signature cocktail?  Champagne! Don’t mess with a good thing.

    What type of cake or dessert did you serve?  We had a five tiered cake. Every layer was a different flavor, from rich carrot cake to a simple rose flavor. We also had my favorite See’s Candies at each table – I have a huge sweet tooth!

     

    Stacy McCain, Palace Garden Court | Snippet & Ink Stacy McCain, Palace Garden Court | Snippet & Ink
    Stacy McCain, Palace Garden Court | Snippet & Ink Stacy McCain, Palace Garden Court | Snippet & Ink

     

    Did you include any other traditions in your wedding?  My something old was a lace handkerchief my mother had bought at a flea market in France and monogrammed with our wedding date; my something new was a pair of pearl earrings from my parents; my something borrowed was my mother’s pearl necklace; and my something blue was my initial monogrammed into my wedding dress.

    Any DIY details?  I had a handkerchief monogrammed with a personal note for my father and gave it to him the morning of our wedding day, he wore this close to his heart all night.

     

    Stacy McCain, Palace Garden Court | Snippet & Ink Stacy McCain, Palace Garden Court | Snippet & Ink
    Stacy McCain, Palace Garden Court | Snippet & Ink Stacy McCain, Palace Garden Court | Snippet & Ink
    Stacy McCain, Palace Garden Court | Snippet & Ink Stacy McCain, Palace Garden Court | Snippet & Ink

     

    What was the best advice you received as a bride? Don’t leave each other’s side all night – enjoy every moment and take it all in together.

    What advice do you have for other couples in the midst of planning a wedding?  Don’t sweat the small stuff.

    If you had it to do over again, is there anything you would do differently?  I wouldn’t have sweated the small stuff!

     

    Stacy McCain, Palace Garden Court | Snippet & Ink Stacy McCain, Palace Garden Court | Snippet & Ink
    Photography: Gertrude & Mabel / Event Planning and Design: Stacy McCain Event Planning / Venue: Palace Hotel in San Francisco, California / Church: Calvary Presbyterian / Dress: Caroline Herrera / Shoes, Hairpins: Chanel / Suit: J. Crew / Bow Tie, Suspenders: Ralph Lauren / Shoes: Cole Haan /  Bridesmaid Dresses: Ralph Lauren / Floral Design: Sharla Flock / Stationery: Union Street Papery / Rentals: Classic Party Rentals, La Tavola / Lighting, Sound: Got Light / Ceremony Music: An Elegant Touch of Strings Quartet / Cocktail Music: Music To Go / Band: Notorious / Makeup: Sherrie Long / Hair: Julie Dy / Transportation: Classic Cable Car / Videography: Artisan Production
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  • Palace Garden Court Wedding from Stacy McCain

    16 October 2014
  • 1 comments posted +add a comment SEE MORE: Real Weddings