Let’s make summer last just a little longer with this romantic botanical wedding from Love Me Do Photography. Seersucker suits, cascading vines, homemade limoncello, all in the country’s oldest botanical garden tucked away in the city of Philadelphia…
Centerpieces were a mix of bud vases and rustic wood planter boxes filled with white flowers, ivy, and other foliage. The flower boxes were one of the couple’s DIY projects, as were lace table runners and all of the stationery.
How’s this for a totally unique and super fun idea? At the end of the reception, guests danced with white parasols, echoing the Philadelphia tradition of the Mummers Parade.
SEE THE FULL GALLERY FOR MORE ROMANTIC DETAILS FROM THIS PHILADELPHIA GARDEN WEDDING.
Why did you choose this location for your wedding? We picked Bartram’s Garden because of the rustic garden setting and its close proximity to Center City. We were also surprised and happy to discover that it is the oldest botanical garden in the country!
What inspired you when you were planning your wedding? We wanted a romantic rustic, country wedding tucked away in the city. Our colors were ivory, and greens and browns. I was inspired by lace, seersucker, twine, burlap, candlelight.
What was your favorite moment or part of the day? Hearing the wedding vows that we wrote for one another.
What was the best advice you received as a bride? It sounds simple, but enjoy the wedding day! Stop worrying about all the details and moving pieces, and cherish all the little moments.
What advice do you have for other brides? You can’t start planning soon enough, particularly if you want to have your first choice of venue and vendors!
Do you have any budget tips for other brides? If you start early enough in the process, certainly try to DIY as much as you can – though don’t leave too much to do towards the end, and make sure you don’t have any responsibilities on the wedding day itself.
The rain may have forced Emily and Raymond to change some of their wedding day plans at the last minute, but their celebration was no less beautiful or special because of it. And photographer Jessica Lorren was there to capture it all on film…
Bride, Emily, on the weather: “Initially we had every intention to be on the dock, closest to that lake to say our ‘I do’s’ if not for the rain or the unpredictable wind that day. My friend, Will, had spent months building an outside structure hung with glass bubbles for us to stand under and it was inconceivable we would be anywhere else. We waited to the last minute, but eventually the rain won out, so on that unusually cold late evening in May, we stood in front of the elegant white French doors of the charming boathouse and proceeded on, as if it had been our plan all along. It wasn’t the golden al fresco ceremony we had envisioned, but in the end, it didn’t matter. Down that aisle still stood my gorgeous groom and we were getting married! In hindsight, having the ceremony inside was a blessing in disguise. The minister dropped Ray’s ring during our exchange and I could only imagine the picture of our wedding party simultaneously jumping into that lake after that ring. My girlfriends, dressed in gold sequined Aidan Mattox dresses, would have sunk straight to the bottom!”
Says the bride, “I worked with Amy of Seaport Flowers for weeks as she meticulously perfected all my incomplete thoughts and ideas. Mercury glass vases, frosted goblets, and glass tumblers spilling with charm peonies and garden roses set the tone for our unbelievably intimate and romantic reception.”
For dessert there were two types of wedding cake: chocolate cake with layers of chocolate ganache and fresh strawberries, and pistachio cake with layers of rosewater buttercream and fresh raspberries with a vanilla buttercream frosting finish.
SEE THE FULL GALLERY FOR MORE LOVELY SHOTS OF THIS WEDDING AT THE BROOKLYN BOATHOUSE
Why did you choose this location for your wedding?Emily: We loved everything about our venue. I’m pretty sure it was love at first sight for me. I thought the boathouse was incredibly charming with all its French doors, high arches, and sweeping staircase. I couldn’t envision anything more perfect for our day. // Raymond: When I saw the venue in person for the first time, I just knew it was right. Sometimes you have a feeling that this is the right place.
What was your favorite moment or part of the day?Emily: For me, it was definitely our first look. Ray is usually pretty collected when it comes to his emotions, but he completely came undone when he turned around and saw me for the first time. Of course I thought my groom was gorgeous as well, but Ray’s emotional response really took me for surprise. It really was a special start to our day. // Raymond: There are two moments. The first is our first look before the wedding when Emily tapped my shoulder and I turned around and saw the most beautiful woman in my life. I was taken aback and lost it for a moment. The second is when the I heard the drums starting to play as our recessional song came on. My wife, the moment, my emotional tears, the song, it is forever etched in memory.
Did you include any traditions in your wedding? Ray is Chinese and I’m Korean and that could have proven to be a very lengthy and exhausting day if we had chosen to acknowledge all our customs and traditions. We wanted to respect what was important to our families, but asked that they also embrace the new Western traditions we grew up with as well. We agreed to a Chinese Tea Ceremony with our rehearsal dinner the night before our wedding for Ray’s side, but we nervously insisted on our “first dance” with our usually reserved Asian parents on the day of. Ray and I danced with our parents to Laura Fygi’s version of “I Love You For Sentimental Reasons.” It was the first time either of us had been in such close physical proximity to our parents for any lengthy measurable amounts of time, but it was probably one of the fondest memories of the night!
What was the best advice you received as a bride? Don’t get stuck making the details perfect. You’ll have many more perfect days with your man so don’t focus on the one.
What advice do you have for other brides? Anything can go wrong, but everything will be all right! No, really, it will.
Do you have any budget tips for other brides? Splurge on what’s important to you; don’t get lost in what isn’t. I think as a bride you can get overwhelmed at what’s available to you. In the beginning you might think that you need it all and that can be really misleading, not to mention very costly. I focused on my must haves and questioned them frequently along my timeline to see if they still remained just as important.
This week we’re highlighting some of the amazing vendors in the brand new Snippet & Ink Select vendor guide! Today’s wedding comes to us from Rad + In Love, which is appropriate since this wedding is totally rad, and the couple is clearly in love. A little about their unique choice of venue: “We love to travel (we were engaged in Paris), we are huge aviation fans, and we’re especially into vintage aircraft. The Planes of Fame Air Museum has such a wonderful collection, and it’s run by people who are really cool and really passionate about their preservation efforts as well as the promotion of general aviation. We got the absolute perfect wedding venue that felt totally ‘us’ and it felt great knowing that we were supporting a good cause at the same time.”
The couple used books and aeronautical charts from their private pilot ground school class, as well as vintage items from their home, to decorate the guest sign-in table and gift table including a vintage pilot’s log book used as the guest book.
SEE THE FULL GALLERY FOR MORE VINTAGE AIRPLANE WEDDING INSPIRATION
What inspired you when you were planning your wedding? Once we knew where the wedding was going to be we drew inspiration from old movies, especially ones that involved WWII planes or Paris. We also looked at vintage pilot training films, photos and memories from our trip to Paris where we got engaged, and we spent a lot of time just walking around the museum and driving around the airport getting excited about all of the amazingly cool things laying around there.
What was your favorite moment or part of the day? There were so many little moments that stand out… our grand entrance when we pulled up to the reception hangar in our friends Korean War era Jeep… the moment when it was my turn to walk out and down the aisle and I got so nervous I thought I was going to pass out or throw up or both… But I think my favorite part of the day was at the end of the night. It wasn’t planned, it just sort of happened almost as if we’d just had our normal Christmas cocktail party at our house. We were hugging people and saying goodbye and looking for shoes and purses and then suddenly we looked across the hangar at each other and found ourselves to be the last ones there. We had been living together for 9 years, the last 3 we had just spend being engaged and planning this huge event, and now I looked at this man who was now my husband, and he looked at me, and we laughed and hugged and looked around and marveled at what we had just done. It really felt like the beginning of something new.
Did you include any traditions in your wedding? I really wanted to throw my bouquet from a biplane. I imagined putting a little parachute on it and making a low pass over the crowd to drop it over the side, but that didn’t work out and I just did the traditional toss over my head. We also did a cake cutting and sort of squished it in each others faces, although when I tried to wipe some whipped cream off of the cake cutter and onto my husband’s cheek, I realized as I was doing it that the cutter was serrated and I almost cut him!
What was the best advice you received as a bride? My cousin had recently been married and she was adamant about hiring a coordinator – and I am so glad I did! It was expensive but it was worth every penny. Laura and her team from Rebel Belle made it a wow wedding that went smoothly and left me with nothing to worry about except the blisters from my shoes.
What advice do you have for other brides? Stay out of the sun. I had a strapless dress, and THE WORST tank top tan ever and I couldn’t blend it away in time for the wedding. Thankfully our super pro photographers were able to capture me at angles where it didn’t show. Also, if you’re going to spend money on anything, definitely splurge on a photographer you love and a coordinator you click with. We did both and I owe my wonderful memories of that day to them. Lastly, you will find it very difficult to have a moment to yourself on this day. You will be the most famous person in the universe at your wedding and everybody is going to want to talk to you constantly, so if you can slip away either by yourself or with your new spouse, do it. Just for a few minutes, get somewhere where you can be alone and just look around you and let it sink in. Look at the faces of your friends, watch them laughing and drinking and dancing, listen to the music, look at all of your décor and just appreciate for a little bit by yourself.
Do you have any budget tips for other brides? We saved a lot of money by doing a few things differently. Instead of a traditional wedding caterer, which was way out of our league price-wise, we hired a food truck. We bought all of our alcohol and sodas from Costco and hired a licensed bartending service to serve it. Also, instead of a traditional wedding cake, we saved several hundred dollars by having small cakes that acted as centerpieces on each table and that guests could cut and served themselves whenever they felt like it. That was our baker’s idea and it was brilliant!
A variety of patterns, from chevron paper straws to striped washi tape, checked napkins to ticking tablecloths, added a touch of whimsy to the black and white palette. Lush greenery added a fresh pop of color to the tables.
DON’T MISS THE FULL GALLERY FOR EVEN MORE GORGEOUS DETAILS FROM THIS WEDDING
Why did you choose this location for your wedding? The Presidio is very special to us. We live just outside the gates and run there regularly. It’s also where Stephen proposed during a run in August! The PSC is in the city, but it has a light and airy feeling. It’s such a unique space, we loved it.
What inspired you when you were planning your wedding? We wanted the wedding to reflect our relationship: classic with a twist, intimate and fun. We wanted our guests to feel like they were at the most amazing dinner party.
What was your favorite moment or part of the day? Just before we walked into the reception, we had a moment together. We took a photo in the Magnolia photo booth and just shared a moment together. It was so sweet and romantic, it’s a moment I’ll always remember.
Did you include any traditions in your wedding? We used traditional vows, but supplemented with our own personal vows to each other.
What advice do you have for other brides? Everyone says this, but take that moment at some point to let things sink in with your new husband. And, when you’re planning, try and see the forest through the trees. There are lots of little decisions, but they’re much easier to make if you have a vision for your big day and you know what your priorities are.
Is there anything else that helps tell the story of the day? We knew we wanted the wedding to reflect our relationship and our style. We love to host dinner parties at our house and we approached the wedding in the same way we do when we have people over to our own home. What can we do to make sure the night is filled with great conversations, lots of laughter, amazing food, delicious wine and a little bit of craziness? I think we succeeded. The other thing that was special is the use of S♥G. We are big skiers and it’s one of the things we most love to do together. Early in our relationship, Stephen carved S♥G into the snow with his ski pole and it just stuck. Every time I saw the monogram at the wedding, it reminded me of that romantic gesture.
Menu Hors d’Ouevres: Spicy Tuna Tartar Cubes, Kampachi Sashimi on an Udon Spoon, Pork Belly Bites, Gouger and Mushroom Mornay, Sweet Pea Crostini, Oyster Bar // First Course: Fresh White Fish Ceviche with Avocado Mousse and House-Made Chips // Second Course: choice of Butter Lettuce Salad with Champagne Vinaigrette or Market Salad with Chopped Kale, Carrot, Radish, Golden Beets, Pumpkin Seeds, Sherry Vinaigrette // Entree: choice of Filet of Beef, Duck Confit or Seared Diver Scallops // Late Night Snacks: Cheese toast, French Fries in paper cones, Beignets
Shannon and Pete’s intimate DIY wedding took place in their own backyard, with delightful pics by Morrissey Photo…
“When Pete and I first started talking about what we envisioned for our wedding day, we always knew we wanted it to be simple,” says Shannon. “At first, we saw ourselves getting married at City Hall and having a small reception with family to follow. We realized how important it was for our family (and dog, Betty White) to be there, so we decided to invite immediate family to our own backyard, for an intimate wedding with 13 guests. We had just moved into our house about a year prior to getting engaged, so we worked hard to fix up the yard to make it presentable for the big day.”
Love this: “I am just a little obsessed with details, so we embarked on a lot of DIY projects. Hand-dying fabric to create ombre strips that would hang from a tree was our first Pinterest fail, but we still ended up using them. “
Says the bride: “Since my family has a Native American background, we wanted to include a blanket ceremony. We asked our families to send us scraps of patterned yellow and grey fabric, which my best friend’s mom was kind enough to sew into a beautiful color wheel quilt. It’s something we can hold onto forever and it reminds us of our families uniting and all of that awesomely cheesy stuff.”
Sips included home brewed beer (complete with labels designed by the groom) and sangria.
Says the bride: “Our families joined forces the days leading up to the wedding to help us hang string lights, streamers, install a yellow and white striped tent, wash all of the mismatched vintage china we had been collecting, make hors d’oeuvres, and a lot more. We were really lucky to have their help, and it made everything even more meaningful.”
The wedding was full of DIY details that the bride and groom created together. “We made our own home brew together and Pete even designed the labels. We canned four different types of homemade jams for favors, with my illustrations on the labels. We made our own invitations. Since we only had 13 guests (17 if you count us and our amazing photographers), I decided to make place cards with drawings of each person. We spray painted plastic bunnies with gold paint and created place card holders, since we have two bunnies of our own and they hold a special place in our little family.”
Says Shannon, “We told everyone we wouldn’t really be dancing, but when our photographers kindly encouraged us to dance a bit under the tree at night with all of the lights, we were really glad they did. Now we have “a song” we can look back on and remember the night: “You Can Have It All” by Yo La Tengo. It was a magical moment for us, under the lights and streamers and just staring at the stars while spinning slowly together.”
Even the couple’s wedding film was DIY! “My brother was filming footage during the day (his first time using a DSLR for video), so I pieced together my favorite bits for a DIY wedding video. I’ve never edited video before, so it’s amateur, but we love it since it’s set to our song.”
What was your favorite moment or part of the day? I managed to forget my bridal bouquet in our house as I was about to walk down our makeshift aisle with my dad. I had to run back inside and search all over the house for them, running past a confused caterer and trying to not take forever. When I came back out, I was frazzled, but felt calm after looking at the end of the aisle and realizing what we were about to do.
What was the best advice you received as a bride? You can’t please everyone, so try not to worry about what everyone else thinks. Having a wedding so intimate might be confusing to friends and extended family who really want to be there, but at the end of the day you should really do what feels right to you as a couple. Having a talented photographer (or two!) is key when you’re having such a small wedding, so you can share the details with everyone and remind them that their support means a lot in your life. Sometimes you have to step back and ask yourself, “Am I a big wedding person?” and go from there.
What advice do you have for other brides? During the wedding planning process, you’ll end up finding out a lot about each other, and during ours, we discovered we really like exploring things together. Even if it means burning a batch of homemade whoopie pies in the early hours of your wedding day and waking your sleep-deprived family with the lovely sounds of a smoke detector.
Is there anything else that helps tell the story of the day? Everything about our wedding day was just what I imagined: it was completely laid back and really about creating a conversation between our two families. We wanted a long, relaxed dinner with some of our favorite foods (shrimp tacos were a must) and our caterer really made that memorable. It was my brother’s birthday, so the chef even brought out a banana crème brûlée with a candle in it after everyone was lighting sparklers around the fire pit.