Are you ready for summer, because we are! Ina and Zack’s wedding on a friend’s organic farm is sure to whet your appetite for barbecue and camping and dancing under the stars…

SEE THE GALLERY FOR MORE IMAGES FROM THIS PLAYFUL FARM WEDDING BY JILLIAN MITCHELL.

Jillian Mitchell | Snippet & Ink Jillian Mitchell | Snippet & Ink

 

What inspired you when you were planning your wedding?  The amount of wedding-related resources available to couples is overwhelming. It can be paralyzing. Most people seem to stockpile a mountain of ideas first and then piece together their vision from their favorite parts. Our best ideas came from introspection first and deciding what we wanted before setting out to find inspiration.

 

2-jillianmitchell-snippetandink-inazack 2-jillianmitchell-snippetandink-inazack
Jillian Mitchell | Snippet & Ink Jillian Mitchell | Snippet & Ink
5-jillianmitchell-snippetandink-inazack 5-jillianmitchell-snippetandink-inazack

 

Why did you choose this location for your ceremony?  We wanted a casual, outdoor setting that was beautiful and would allow us to party throughout the night. We specifically wanted a venue that could handle both events without a fuss so our guests could enjoy themselves. A childhood friend’s family owns an incredible organic farm near her hometown – it was the perfect blend of scenery, delicious local food and no curfew! Full Belly Farms exceeded every expectation. The farm’s magnificent walnut-tree orchard provided shade during the day and let us see the stars as we celebrated through the night.

 

Jillian Mitchell | Snippet & Ink Jillian Mitchell | Snippet & Ink

 

What was the best advice you received as a bride?  Hey! What about the groom!? Make it yours. Keep it fun.

What advice do you have for other couples in the midst of planning a wedding?  Recruit your friends to participate in the planning and even the wedding itself. It may seem like an imposition, but people enjoy contributing to the success of a great party. Aside from that, prioritize the photography. Besides the rings and certificate, your photos are the only things of substance you get to keep.

 

7-jillianmitchell-snippetandink-inazack 7-jillianmitchell-snippetandink-inazack
8-jillianmitchell-snippetandink-inazack 8-jillianmitchell-snippetandink-inazack

 

The Ceremony

“Our approach to the entire wedding was to only include elements that were important to us. No expectations, traditions or conventions were included if we could not connect with them. The ceremony reflected that.”

 

Jillian Mitchell | Snippet & Ink Jillian Mitchell | Snippet & Ink
Jillian Mitchell | Snippet & Ink Jillian Mitchell | Snippet & Ink

 

Your ceremony in three words.  Sincere, Comfortable, Festive.

Who officiated your ceremony?  We knew instantly that we wanted our friend Beau to officiate. He’s genuine, well-spoken and absolutely hilarious. He’s also incredibly generous. Beau flew half-way around the world to join us before jumping back on another international flight the next day. We could not be more grateful. He was amazing.

Did you include any traditions in your ceremony?  Nope. That’s not for us.

What was your ceremony music?  Another great friend, Michael, graced us with his incredible guitar talents. He played a wonderful rendition of Led Zeppelin’s Bron-Yr-Aur.

What were your ceremony readings?  Our close friend, Gabe, shared a secular passage from Kurt Vonnegut’s book A Man Without a Country. Essentially, it summed up our feelings: “If this isn’t nice, I don’t know what is.” Her delivery was perfect.

 

Jillian Mitchell | Snippet & Ink Jillian Mitchell | Snippet & Ink

 

What were your vows like?  Honest, unconventional, not fluffy, but meaningful. We first shared our vows with each other the morning of the wedding privately. It relieved some of the pressure so that we could actually enjoy the ceremony.

What was your favorite thing about your wedding ceremony?  We loved that our close friends participated in every aspect. It was real and relaxed.

 

Jillian Mitchell | Snippet & Ink Jillian Mitchell | Snippet & Ink

 

The Reception

“How would I describe our reception? The largest party we have ever thrown!”

 

15-jillianmitchell-snippetandink-inazack 15-jillianmitchell-snippetandink-inazack
16-jillianmitchell-snippetandink-inazack 16-jillianmitchell-snippetandink-inazack

 

What was your first dance song? Father/daughter or mother/son dance? “You Are the Best Thing” by Ray LaMontagne.

 

Jillian Mitchell | Snippet & Ink Jillian Mitchell | Snippet & Ink

 

What was your wedding menu?  Our menu was hand-crafted by the incredibly talented and flexible team at Full Belly Farms built mainly on the produce they grow on their farm. Local, fresh, in-season and immensely delicious.

 

18-jillianmitchell-snippetandink-inazack 18-jillianmitchell-snippetandink-inazack
Jillian Mitchell | Snippet & Ink Jillian Mitchell | Snippet & Ink

 

Please tell us about any other special details or moments from your reception.  Most of our guests camped on the farm with us. People literally danced to their heart’s content, walked a few hundred yards down a candle-lit pathway to a cozy tent under the stars and fell asleep.

 

19-jillianmitchell-snippetandink-inazack 19-jillianmitchell-snippetandink-inazack
Jillian Mitchell | Snippet & Ink Jillian Mitchell | Snippet & Ink

 

What was your favorite moment or part of the reception?  We bought the largest box of the longest duration sparklers we could legally buy. The childlike joy on everyone’s faces as we all ran through the orchard was priceless.

If you had it to do over again, is there anything you would do differently?  Can we do it again? Please tell us we can! Even after a few small hiccups we would not change a thing.

 

Jillian Mitchell | Snippet & Ink Jillian Mitchell | Snippet & Ink
Jillian Mitchell | Snippet & Ink Jillian Mitchell | Snippet & Ink
Photography: Jillian Mitchell / Venue: Full Belly Farms in Guinda, California / Dress: Paula Varsalona / Shoes: Nina / Jewelry: Riki Design / Suit, Shirt, Shoes: Ted Baker / Tie: Penguin / Stationery: Press Engaged / Ceremony Music: Michael Shanks / Reception Music: Erik Torgersen / Officiant: Beau Miller

Jillian Mitchell is a Snippet & Ink Select Vendor.
This post contains affiliate links. 

0 comments posted +add a comment SEE MORE: Real Weddings

Lindsey and Jack first found out about Houston Station when they attended a friend’s wedding there, and it seemed like the perfect place to hold their January wedding. Exposed brick walls, high ceilings, and large windows provided a flexible canvas and unique backdrop for their celebration.

SEE THE GALLERY FOR MORE IMAGES FROM THIS NASHVILLE WEDDING FROM AMY NICOLE.

Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink

 

Lindsey’s bridesmaids wore pale pink dresses and carried bouquets that contrasted deep burgundy flowers against blush and cream.

 

Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink
2-amynicole-snippetandink-lindseyjack 2-amynicole-snippetandink-lindseyjack

 

Did you include any other traditions in your wedding?  Jack’s family is Korean, and they gave me a traditional hanbok, a traditional Korean wedding gown. Jack’s mother also wore a traditional hanbok.

 

5-amynicole-snippetandink-lindseyjack 5-amynicole-snippetandink-lindseyjack
Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink

 

The Ceremony

“Jack and I had been to Houston Station for a friend’s wedding early in our relationship. It’s beautiful, with good character, and we were happy to return for our own wedding.”

 

Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink
Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink

 

Your ceremony in three words.  Traditional, classic, energetic.

What was your ceremony music?  A variety of traditional hymns and meaningful songs to us sung by friends, the Running Roots, comprised by Hillary McBride and Brett Rutledge.

What were your ceremony readings?  Traditional passages we chose from the Bible as well as a hand written monologue from friends of the bride. We said traditional vows.

 

Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink

 

What was your favorite thing about your wedding ceremony?  The closeness. Despite having a large guest list, our ceremony felt so intimate.

 

Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink
13-amynicole-snippetandink-lindseyjack 13-amynicole-snippetandink-lindseyjack

 

What was the best advice you received as a bride?  Don’t sweat the details, it will all come together!

What advice do you have for other couples in the midst of planning a wedding?  Don’t lose sight of one another in the midst of the craziness! Go on dates, and have whole days where you don’t talk about wedding things.

 

Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink
Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink

 

The Reception

“Our reception was at the same place as the ceremony, they just flipped it during cocktail hour, a feature we loved. We wanted there to be plenty of good food and for everyone to have a great time!”

 

Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink
18-amynicole-snippetandink-lindseyjack 18-amynicole-snippetandink-lindseyjack

 

How would you describe your reception?  An energetic celebration!

 

Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink

 

What type of cake or dessert did you serve?  The wedding cake was an almond naked cake. The groom’s cake was a Nutella banana cake in the shape of a shirt and bow tie.

 

Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink
Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink

 

What was your first dance song?  Our first dance was a cover of “Ain’t Nothing Like the Real Thing” by Drew Holcomb and the Neighbors.

 

Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink
Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink

 

What was your favorite moment or part of the reception?  Everyone having so much fun!

 

Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink
Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink
Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink Amy Nicole | Snippet & Ink
Photography: Amy Nicole / Venue: Houston Station in Nashville, Tennessee / Event Planning & Design: Kelly Dellinger Events / Dress: BHLDN / Shoes: Manolo Blahnik / Suit, Tie, Shirt, Shoes, Groomsmen Attire: Macys / Stationery: Paper Source / Floral Design: Violet Floral Design / Rentals: Liberty Party Rentals / Ceremony Music: The Running Roots / DJ: DJ Josh Hish, DJ Emcees / Catering: A Dream Come True Events and Catering / Cake: Dulce Desserts / Transportation: Matchless Transportation Services

This post contains affiliate links. 

3 comments posted +add a comment SEE MORE: Real Weddings

We just love all the unique elements in Dana and Ben’s wedding that come together for an event that’s romantic and chic, rustic and modern, elegant and fun all at once. From the gorgeous invitation suite to the rustic chuppah (made by the groom!) to the use of deep, dramatic blue, you’re bound to find inspiration here.

SEE THE GALLERY FOR MORE IMAGES FROM THIS ELEGANT VIRGINIA WEDDING FROM JODI MILLER AND SIMPLY CHIC EVENTS.

Jodi Miller, Simply Chic Weddings | Snippet & Ink Jodi Miller, Simply Chic Weddings | Snippet & Ink
2-jodimiller-snippetandink-danaben 2-jodimiller-snippetandink-danaben

 

The navy blue and white invitation suite hinted at the colors and motifs guests would find at the wedding, including deep blue drapes and ikat linens.

 

3-jodimiller-snippetandink-danaben 3-jodimiller-snippetandink-danaben
4-jodimiller-snippetandink-danaben 4-jodimiller-snippetandink-danaben

 

Dana’s bridesmaids wore barely blush dresses and all the ladies carried bouquets of pale pink and white flowers.

 

Jodi Miller, Simply Chic Weddings | Snippet & Ink Jodi Miller, Simply Chic Weddings | Snippet & Ink

 

The bride’s Lazaro gown featured lace and a ruffled skirt and train.

 

6-jodimiller-snippetandink-danaben 6-jodimiller-snippetandink-danaben
Jodi Miller, Simply Chic Weddings | Snippet & Ink Jodi Miller, Simply Chic Weddings | Snippet & Ink

 

The Ceremony

“We are both from the DC area and knew we wanted a mini-destination wedding – somewhere people could come for the weekend, but that was relatively convenient and easy to get to. We had an idea of the type of venue we wanted (slightly rustic) but we also wanted a nice resort to serve as our home base. Working with Keswick Hall and Castle Hill worked out perfectly and accomplished all of our goals. The loft at Castle Hill which we used for the ceremony was perfect because it provided a romantic candlelit setting for the ceremony.”

 

Jodi Miller, Simply Chic Weddings | Snippet & Ink Jodi Miller, Simply Chic Weddings | Snippet & Ink
10a-jodimiller-snippetandink-danaben 10a-jodimiller-snippetandink-danaben

 

Your ceremony in three words.   Traditional, personal, gorgeous.

How did you go about planning your ceremony?   It was a fairly easy process. We knew we wanted an acoustic guitar with a vocalist so we choose the songs for that and the reading relatively early on. We also knew that Ben was going to build the chuppah and how we wanted it to look. For the rest of the details about the aesthetics of the room we worked with Kate and Jamie (our wedding planners from Simply Chic Events) and then let our Rabbi lead the way in terms of the substance of the ceremony.

What was your ceremony music?
Processional: Here Comes the Sun by The Beatles
Bride’s Processional: Crazy Love by Van Morrison/Ray Charles
Recessional: Accidentally in Love by The Counting Crows

What were your ceremony readings?  A passage from Captain Corelli’s Mandolin.

 

Jodi Miller, Simply Chic Weddings | Snippet & Ink Jodi Miller, Simply Chic Weddings | Snippet & Ink
13-jodimiller-snippetandink-danaben 13-jodimiller-snippetandink-danaben

 

Who officiated your ceremony?  Dana’s first cousin-in-law is a Rabbi and we loved having that personal touch so we knew we would use him.

Did you include any traditions in your ceremony?  Yes – we had a chuppah, did the traditional cups of wine for a Jewish ceremony and Ben broke the glass.

What was your favorite thing about your wedding ceremony?  The acoustic guitar and vocalist – I love that we did music with lyrics that we choose for the ceremony. I also loved the candlelit feel of the room during the ceremony.

 

Jodi Miller, Simply Chic Weddings | Snippet & Ink Jodi Miller, Simply Chic Weddings | Snippet & Ink

 

The Reception

“How would I describe our reception? The space was gorgeous and the reception was one big, really fun dance party!”

 

15-jodimiller-snippetandink-danaben 15-jodimiller-snippetandink-danaben
16-jodimiller-snippetandink-danaben 16-jodimiller-snippetandink-danaben

 

 

Why did you choose this location for your reception?  We loved how gorgeous the grounds of Castle Hill are and how big and beautiful the barn is – the wall of windows and large barn doors provide lots of natural light and the wood beams give you a great base to work with but also allowed us to bring a lot of stuff in and really make it our own. We had a vision of how we wanted the wedding to look and feel, and then surrounded ourselves with great people who were able to help us make it happen.

 

 

Jodi Miller, Simply Chic Weddings | Snippet & Ink Jodi Miller, Simply Chic Weddings | Snippet & Ink
18-jodimiller-snippetandink-danaben 18-jodimiller-snippetandink-danaben

 

Did you have a signature cocktail?  We offered sparkling cider (made at our venue) and “Ben’s Bourbon Bar” with a variety of favorite bourbons.

 

Jodi Miller, Simply Chic Weddings | Snippet & Ink Jodi Miller, Simply Chic Weddings | Snippet & Ink

 

“The barn was already beautiful, and with the help of our planners we adorned with drapes, romantic flowers, farm tables, chandeliers and lounge furniture to create exactly the feeling we wanted.”

 

20-jodimiller-snippetandink-danaben 20-jodimiller-snippetandink-danaben
Jodi Miller, Simply Chic Weddings | Snippet & Ink Jodi Miller, Simply Chic Weddings | Snippet & Ink

 

The rich blue drapes and Deco-inspired chandeliers created an elegant contrast against the rustic venue. Long white farm tables were a perfect balance of rustic and elegant.

 

25-jodimiller-snippetandink-danaben 25-jodimiller-snippetandink-danaben
23-jodimiller-snippetandink-danaben 23-jodimiller-snippetandink-danaben

 

What was your wedding menu?  We offered passed hors d’oeuvres, a raw bar, and a Mediterranean station during cocktails, a two course plated dinner, an after-dinner sweets station, and a late night brick over pizza truck (Blue Ridge Pizza Co.).

What type of cake or dessert did you serve?  We had a small cake for cutting and a large sweets display. We wanted our guests to be able to sample lots of treats instead of offering only traditional wedding cake.

Please tell us about any other special details or moments from your reception.  The late night brick oven pizza truck was a unique and special detail.

 

Jodi Miller, Simply Chic Weddings | Snippet & Ink Jodi Miller, Simply Chic Weddings | Snippet & Ink
26-jodimiller-snippetandink-danaben 26-jodimiller-snippetandink-danaben

 

What was your first dance song?  Our first dance was Wonderful Tonight by Eric Clapton. Our father/daughter dance was Landslide by Fleetwood Mac.

What was your favorite moment or part of the reception?  It’s so hard to pick just one! I think being on the dance floor with everyone that we both love was the best part.

 

27-jodimiller-snippetandink-danaben 27-jodimiller-snippetandink-danaben
Jodi Miller, Simply Chic Weddings | Snippet & Ink Jodi Miller, Simply Chic Weddings | Snippet & Ink

 

What was the best advice you received as a bride?  To try to slow down and take it all in because the day will go by so quickly and be over before you know it.

What advice do you have for other couples in the midst of planning a wedding?  Enjoy the planning process! It’s such a fun and exciting time and it goes by so quickly. Hire vendors that you trust and everything will fall into place.

If you had it to do over again, is there anything you would do differently? Not a thing.

 

Jodi Miller, Simply Chic Weddings | Snippet & Ink Jodi Miller, Simply Chic Weddings | Snippet & Ink
Photography: Jodi Miller / Venue: Castle Hill Cider in Keswick, Virginia / Event Planning & Design: Simply Chic Events / Officiant: Rabbi Darby Leigh / Dress: Lazaro via Kleinfelds / Shoes: Givenchy / Jewelry: Thomas Knoell / Bridesmaid Dresses: Joanna August / Suit: Geoffrey Lewis LTD / Stationery, Calligraphy: Brown Linen Design / Floral Design: Beehive Events / Hair, Makeup: Lora Kelley / Rentals: DC Rental and La Tavola Fine Linen / Music: Bachelor Boys Band / Catering: Keswick Hall / Cake: Maliha Creations

Simply Chic Events and La Tavola Fine Linen are Snippet & Ink Select vendors. 

1 comments posted +add a comment SEE MORE: Real Weddings

Michelle and Bill opted for an unconventional wedding – joined by just nine guests, they tied the knot in a grove of Banyan trees, and celebrated their nuptials with an intimate dinner at a house they rented for the week. They chose Iolani Palace on Oahu as the backdrop for some truly lovely portraits. Simple and love-filled – nothing more required.

SEE THE GALLERY FOR ALL IMAGES FROM THIS DESTINATION WEDDING BY ASHLEY CAMPER.

Ashley Camper | Snippet & Ink Ashley Camper | Snippet & Ink

 

Did you include any traditions in your wedding?  Not really. We knew we wanted it to be different and meaningful to us. We didn’t want it to look cookie cutter – we wanted it real and vintage and mismatched. My grandmother sent two silk horseshoes for me to carry after the ceremony which is a New Zealand tradition. She also gave me a brown quartz necklace which I incorporated into my bouquet.

 

Ashley Camper | Snippet & Ink Ashley Camper | Snippet & Ink
Ashley Camper | Snippet & Ink Ashley Camper | Snippet & Ink
Ashley Camper | Snippet & Ink Ashley Camper | Snippet & Ink

 

The Ceremony

“We wanted to get married under big Banyan trees, and then have photos in front of a beautiful historic building, so Iolani Palace was perfect as it had both.”

 

Ashley Camper | Snippet & Ink Ashley Camper | Snippet & Ink

 

Your ceremony in three words.  Intimate, meaningful, and relaxed.

Who officiated your ceremony?  Angela Keen. We researched officiants online and as soon as we spoke to her we knew she was perfect.

What was your ceremony music?  No music, but we had a Hawaiian conch shell sound at the start of the ceremony, and our officiant did a Hawaiian blessing.

What were your vows like?  Angela prepared the vows after speaking with us and we discussed them in advance. We were so happy with what she prepared we didn’t change a thing. One thing we asked her to add was mention of our fathers who had both passed away – which brought us all to tears.

 

Ashley Camper | Snippet & Ink Ashley Camper | Snippet & Ink

 

What was your favorite thing about your wedding ceremony?  That it was relaxed and we were surrounded by those closest to us.

Is there anything else that you’d like to share about your wedding ceremony?  The location was perfect – the massive trees and the beautiful grounds were humbling.

 

Ashley Camper | Snippet & Ink Ashley Camper | Snippet & Ink
8-ashleycamper-snippetandink-michellebill 8-ashleycamper-snippetandink-michellebill

 

The Reception

“We didn’t have a formal reception. We just had a gorgeous family dinner at the house we were staying at. It was a low key intimate dinner under retro café lights right on the beach. It was just as we had imagined it would be.”

 

Ashley Camper | Snippet & Ink Ashley Camper | Snippet & Ink
Ashley Camper | Snippet & Ink Ashley Camper | Snippet & Ink

 

Why did you choose this location for your reception?  Because we had small children in the group and wanted it to be easy for them. The house was also beautiful and the perfect venue on the beach so it was a no brainer.

What inspired you when you were planning your wedding?  Wild flowers, the light when the sun is setting, chandeliers hanging from the trees, vintage mismatched table settings, beautiful champagne, candles and retro lighting, and incorporating our fathers.

What was your favorite moment or part of the reception?  The laughter.

What was your first dance song?  We didn’t do a formal dance, but there was some dancing!

What was your wedding menu?  We ordered lots of Whole Foods platters. This way, no one would feel obligated to organize or cook – it was all done for us without having to have a caterer come to the house.

What type of cake or dessert did you serve?  A naked vanilla cake with pomegranate and figs on top. Bill’s mother also made her amazing key lime pie.

Did you have a signature cocktail?  No, but we had lots of Veuve Clicquot for the table.

 

Ashley Camper | Snippet & Ink Ashley Camper | Snippet & Ink
12-ashleycamper-snippetandink-michellebill 12-ashleycamper-snippetandink-michellebill
13-ashleycamper-snippetandink-michellebill 13-ashleycamper-snippetandink-michellebill

 

What was the best advice you received as a bride?  To try and savor the moment. Even so it still went by in a blur.

What advice do you have for other couples in the midst of planning a wedding?  Think about what it is that’s important for you. For us, it was having our immediate family with us. The rest was just details. A photographer that you feel comfortable with is also key if you’re not used to having your photo taken.

Is there anything else that helps tell the story of your wedding?  We wanted the focus to be on our families getting to know each other. Bill’s family is from the U.S., and mine are from New Zealand, so we wanted the week to be about spending time together, not just the day of the wedding.

 

Ashley Camper | Snippet & Ink Ashley Camper | Snippet & Ink
Ashley Camper | Snippet & Ink Ashley Camper | Snippet & Ink
Ashley Camper | Snippet & Ink Ashley Camper | Snippet & Ink
Photography: Ashley Camper / Venue: Iolani Palace in Honolulu, Hawaii / Officiant: Angela Keen / Short Dress: Lover the Label / Long Dress: Via Covet Consignment in Auckland New Zealand / Suit: Three Wise Men / Shirt, Tie: Barkers / Shoes: Working in Style / Bridal Bouquet: Debbie Hemmingway / Event Florals, Catering: Whole Foods / Hair, Makeup: Paul Tamaoka / Cake: Cake Works
6 comments posted +add a comment SEE MORE: Real Weddings

Wendy and Ben live in Toronto, but when it came time to choose a wedding venue, they opted to tie the knot in Ben’s home country of Belgium. Despite planning from afar, the couple did want to take on some DIY projects, including their romantic and modern invitations. And if you love those, then you won’t want to miss the seating display poster – beautiful!

SEE THE GALLERY FOR MORE IMAGES FROM THIS BELGIAN WEDDING BY SPEAKING THROUGH SILENCE.

3-speakingthroughsilence-snippetandink-wendyben 3-speakingthroughsilence-snippetandink-wendyben

 

Wendy and Ben designed the printed materials themselves, blending romantic florals with modern fonts and lines.

 

Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink
Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink
Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink

 

“Ben and I live in Toronto, Canada and we wanted to have our wedding in Brussels, where Ben is from,” says Wendy. “His family and friends live there and we figured our closest friends who had to travel to be with us would enjoy what Belgium had to offer – delicious food, beer, and the best chocolate… what’s not to like!? Although planning a destination wedding was challenging – especially with the language barrier, no planner, and an 8 month timeline – we managed to make it work and we couldn’t be happier with how it turned out.”

 

Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink

 

The Ceremony

Why did you choose this location for your ceremony?  We did not have the flexibility to choose the location because only civil marriage ceremonies are legally recognized in Belgium. After the civil ceremony, which must take place at a town hall, couples can choose to have a religious or secular ceremony as part of their celebration but it is not required. Luckily, towns halls in Brussels are beautiful (Grand Place for example). We chose the town hall in the municipality where Ben grew up, a charming 19th century building that looks like a classic European mansion.

 

Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink

 

Your ceremony in three words.  Intimate, sweet and simple

How did you go about planning your ceremony?  Since we were not having a traditional wedding ceremony, we added a few traditional touches to our civil wedding. We chose to write our own vows and had a ring bearer who held a Canadian and Belgian flag as he passed us the rings. To liven up the ceremony, we included a musician who played the cello for the processional and piano for the recessional. A family friend played the accordion in front of the building as guests await our exit throwing rice and confetti.

 

11-speakingthroughsilence-snippetandink-wendyben 11-speakingthroughsilence-snippetandink-wendyben
Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink

 

Who officiated your ceremony?  The mayor officiated. The ceremony was performed in French and we had an English interpreter. Later at the reception, we held a traditional Chinese tea ceremony to honor the union of our families.

What were your vows like?  We wrote our own vows. Ben wrote his vows in both French and English so our Canadian and Belgian guests could understand his touching words.

 

Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink

 

What was your favorite thing about your wedding ceremony?  Walking in the room together and seeing the love and warmth of our family and friends then exiting as husband and wife while our guests joyfully threw confetti and rice at us.

 

14-speakingthroughsilence-snippetandink-wendyben 14-speakingthroughsilence-snippetandink-wendyben
Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink

 

The Reception

“We wanted our wedding day to be romantic and intimate. We really wanted our family and guests to feel like they were going to a big dinner party! I found the venue while searching online during Ben’s visit with family in Brussels and I asked Ben to scope it out. It was a 14th century monastery, surrounded by large garden with old oak trees, a pond and courtyard. The building had several rooms including the historic arched hall where we held the cocktail hour and an orangerie: a glass room surrounded by the garden, similar to a greenhouse. To us, it was truly a unique venue and perfectly romantic. Ben fell in love with it and when he came back home, we decided to book the last available spot of the year. I didn’t actually see it in person until a few months before the wedding and it was more stunning than I imagined!”

 

Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink

 

How would you describe your reception?  A fairytale dinner party with delicious food, drinks and lots of dancing

What inspired you when you were planning your wedding?  We wanted something romantic yet modern. I was inspired by vintage florals such as Dutch masters’ floral paintings and botanical illustrations by Belgian painter, Pierre-Joseph Redouté. We used his illustrations in our invitations and table numbers and offset the vintage look with modern geometric shapes and fonts. From there, we stuck to a color palette of soft muted colors with a touch of plum.

 

Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink
Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink

 

Wendy carried a bouquet of roses, ranunculus, and greenery, while her bridesmaids each carried a single stem of antique red hydrangea.

 

Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink
Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink
Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink

 

Did you include any traditions in your wedding?  Our wedding was a mish-mash of traditions combining North American, Belgian and Chinese cultures. Before the reception started, we had Chinese wedding tea ceremony to honor and welcome our families together. My bridesmaids served the tea which symbolized luck to our new marriage.

 

Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink
Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink

 

Menu:
First course: Norwegian salmon in a light broth flavored with Thai spices, lemon grass and coconut milk // Second course: Caramelized duck breast, speculoos biscuit covered with apple-pear chutney, ginger decoction, scalloped potatoes and vegetable ratatouille // Third course: Duo of speculoos mousse and white chocolate mousse with crispy grilled hazelnuts

Did you have a signature cocktail?  We served beer – it’s Belgium!

 

23-speakingthroughsilence-snippetandink-wendyben 23-speakingthroughsilence-snippetandink-wendyben
Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink

 

Are there any DIY details you’d like to tell us about?  Ben and I are both in creative fields, and tried to do as much DIY as we could while planning from afar. We focused on smaller projects that we could take in our luggage and graphic design elements: invitations, envelope sleeves and labels, table numbers, name cards, seating chart, poster, banners. Ben’s dad made the wood table number holders days before the wedding, and I made kissing wands with ribbons and bells from the craft store.

 

Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink

 

What was the best advice you received as a bride?  Take it all in – take your time and enjoy each moment.

What advice do you have for other couples in the midst of planning a wedding?  Don’t go crazy trying to include every idea. With Pinterest, wedding shows and blogs, there are endless ideas you will want to include but it will just take more time, money and distract from the overall vision. Ben and I discussed all our ideas together, which kept me in check of not going overboard and it also made sure that the ideas were what we both wanted.

 

Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink
28-speakingthroughsilence-snippetandink-wendyben 28-speakingthroughsilence-snippetandink-wendyben

 

What type of cake or dessert did you serve?  Ben’s good friend – a pastry chef – made 3 different cakes (speculoos, raspberry and cheesecake) and over 100 macarons. In addition, a family friend made her famous French canelé desserts which were divine and looked beautiful on the cake table.

What was your first dance song?  Our first dance was “Big Jet Plane” by Angus & Julia Stone. We knew that was our song when we watched the movie, Romantics Anonymous, during our first year of dating.

If you had it to do over again, is there anything you would do differently? I wouldn’t want to change a thing. It was definitely the most memorable day of our lives; we were elated with our union, how our wedding day turned out and how happy our guests were!

 

Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink Speaking Through Silence | Snippet & Ink
Photography: Speaking Through Silence / Venue: L’Abbaye de Nizelles in Brussels, Belgium / Floral Design: Helianthus Brussels / Stationery, Graphic Design, Printed Materials: Benjamin Gehlen / Dress: Jacinda by Watters via Felichia Bridal / Shoes: Manolo Blahnik / Earrings: J. Crew / Suit: Strellson / Tie: J. Lindberg / Shirt: Eton via Harry Rosen / Cake, Pastries: Julian Courtoy

This post contains affiliate links. 

0 comments posted +add a comment SEE MORE: Real Weddings