Last week I mentioned that we had some extended real wedding features to look forward to – well, today’s feature is bursting at the seams with inspiration! Not only did Nicole and Morgan share tons of details about their wedding day, they also shared their full wedding ceremony and their complete budget breakdown, so be sure to check back throughout the day for even more from this budget-friendly wedding celebration.

SEE THE FULL GALLERY FOR MORE IMAGES FROM THIS CHEERFUL BUDGET-FRIENDLY WEDDING IN LODI.

Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink
Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink
Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink
Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink
Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink

 

The Ceremony

“My older brother is a pastor and he was our officiant, and he had done a wedding previously with a layout we wanted,” says Nicole. “It was pretty standard but he added some personal things to make it more intimate and we changed a few things around. We wrote our own vows and added a little ‘I Do’ at the end of them because I really wanted to say those two words. Morgan had a few verses in mind and explained to my brother why certain things were important to us (like the foot washing ceremony) and then we just let my brother run with it.”

 

Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink
Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink
Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink
Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink
Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink

 

Your ceremony in three words:  Personal, Unique, Memorable.

Were there any DIY projects included in your ceremony?  Morgan: One of the details that stands out for me was the arbor. I wasn’t sure how I was going to build it because I am not very handy with tools, and I wasn’t sure where I would find the rustic wood that we wanted. I was able to resolve both concerns when one day I was driving home and saw a fallen tree on the side of the road that had been there for a while. I called a long time family friend and asked him if he would build the arbor for us with wood from the tree. Through the process of cutting the wood and talking the vision over with my friend, I felt that we had a chance to create a stronger friendship and bond too.

Please tell us about the foot washing ceremony.  In the Bible, Jesus washed the feet of his disciples as a symbol that no person is greater than another. Jesus also did this as an act of service to his loved ones. It was important for us to show this form of vulnerability and service to each other, and to share with our friends and family this act of submission, selfless love, and care for one another. John 13:12-17 explains the reasoning behind our decision: When he had finished washing their feet, he put on his clothes and returned to his place. “Do you understand what I have done for you?” he asked them. “You call me ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord,’ and rightly so, for that is what I am. Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet. I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you. Very truly I tell you, no servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him. Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them.

Anything else?  Nicole: During the ceremony as Morgan was about to read his vows, one of his groomsmen started playing guitar and I looked at him and mouthed ‘WRONG TIME’ but he just winked at me. Little did I know, Morgan was surprising me by singing one of our songs: “She is Love” by Parachute. It was the only time that I cried during the entire day. I love when Morgan sings to me but it was so unexpected for him to perform this act of bravery in front of 170+ people!

 

Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink

 

The Reception

“We really wanted our wedding to be outdoor and intimate, no matter the guest count. The location and layout of our reception venue definitely inspired both of us. I am super out-going and like to be around people,” says Morgan, “but I also loved the intimacy of the venue and being able to see everyone and know who was there.”

 

Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink
Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink
Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink

 

Menu:  Drinks: Lemonade and Sweet Tea // Entrees: Brisket / Chicken // Side Dishes: Loaded Mashed Potatoes, Green Beans with Bacon, Caesar Salad, Dinner Rolls // Dessert: Lemon Sweetheart Cake with Raspberry, Banana Cream Pie, Chocolate Cake, Carrot Cake, Lemon Cupcakes

 

Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink
Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink

 

Did you include any traditions in your wedding?  Nicole: I did have something old, something blue, something borrowed, something new – old, my Grandma’s diamond in my ring; blue, undergarments; borrowed, my mom’s diamond earrings; and new, my dress. We also had the first dances and cutting the cake.

What was the best advice you received as a bride?  Nicole: My sister-in-law/Matron of Honor sent me a long text a few days prior to the wedding telling me she was praying for me, that I could be present during the wedding to really soak everything in and enjoy it all. Throughout the entire day I kept reminding myself “be present, be present.”

What advice do you have for other brides?  Hmm, a few things come to mind. Get an amazing photographer (after all, these are the photos that will be passed down generation to generation). Soak everything in (not just the day of your wedding but also the days leading up to it – the season of engagement is incredible so embrace it). Lastly, this is your big day, but learn to let it go on the day of your wedding. Who cares what goes wrong at that point – you will be married to your best friend at the end of the day and that’s all that matters!

Is there anything else that helps tell the story of the day?  Morgan: One of the things that I feel helps tell the story for me is the reception venue. I grew up in the town of Lodi and the reception was held at my godparents’ house. This was where I learned to swim, I rode my first horse at this ranch, and even spent a lot of my Christmas Eve’s here. So to have a big part of our wedding here was very warming to my heart and added another great memory of this place.

First Dance:  “The Beauty of Who You Are” by Marc Broussard. Instead of a sparkler exit, we did our first dance surrounded by sparklers.

 

Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink
Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink Christina McNeill | Snippet & Ink

 

Full ceremony right HERE.
Budget breakdown right HERE.

Photography: Christina McNeill / Ceremony Venue: Japanese Garden at Micke Grove Park in Lodi, California / Reception Venue: Private Residence in Lodi, California / Ceremony: Micke Grove Park / Event Planner: Liz Wright / Officiant: Pastor Christopher Stites / Dress: Alfred Angelo / Shoes: BC Footwear via Nordstrom / Suit, Shirt: Men’s Warehouse / Tie: Jos. A Bank / Bridesmaid Dresses: Target, Macy’s, Modcloth, JC Penny, Express / Stationery Supplies: Paper Source / Stationery Design: Slojoy /  Floral Design: Paula Lennon / Rentals: Bella Festa Rentals, Lynda’s Balloons / Catering: Dickey’s BBQ Pit / Cake: Ayla Endriss / Sparklers: VIP Sparklers / Mason Jars: Walmart / Hair: Katie Riordan / Makeup: Jessica Scoles 

Christina McNeill is a Snippet & Ink Select vendor.

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Ellen and Patrick’s wedding was a beautiful blend of urban industrial and feminine romance, inspired by their unique venue, the Grand Rapids Downtown Market. Also, you will never believe it but the bride’s gorgeous dress only cost $300! Read on for all the details from this gorgeous celebration.

SEE THE FULL GALLERY FOR MORE IMAGES FROM THIS MODERN ROMANTIC WEDDING IN GRAND RAPIDS.

Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink

 

Why did you choose this location for your wedding?  The Market was a convenient location for both our ceremony and reception. We love the clean, industrial feel, not to mention we love to eat and shop at our local market so it was a perfect fit. We also liked the idea of an urban wedding. We were so inspired by our wedding planner, Rhiannon from Hey Gorgeous Events. She is so talented and she truly helped us find inspiration in the Market and brought our wedding dreams to life.

 

Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink
Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink
Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink
Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink

 

Did you include any traditions in your wedding?  Yes! We had a Scottish bagpiper play for our recessional. He played and walked us from the altar to the reception which is a tradition in Pat’s family.

 

Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink
Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink
Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink
Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink
Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink
Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink
13-bradley-james-snippetandink-ellenpatrick 13-bradley-james-snippetandink-ellenpatrick

 

Please tell us about any special details from your wedding.  There were so many special details, it’s hard to choose! But our guests really enjoyed the two signature drinks: mint infused non-alcoholic iced tea and rosemary infused lemonade with vodka. We also chose a Michigan-themed coffee table book as our guest book which was both meaningful and original.

 

Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink
Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink

 

What was your favorite moment or part of the day?  Our first dance! We danced to “Love on Top” by Beyonce and it was SO MUCH FUN! It marked the true beginning of our wedding celebration.

What was the best advice you received as a bride?  The best advice I received was that as soon as the rehearsal dinner starts you are not allowed to stress or worry because the party has officially started.

What advice do you have for other brides?  Try bridesmaid dresses on that you like and see if they carry them in white/ivory. It may not sound very special but it’s a huge cost savings and there’s much more variety of dress styles and designs to choose from. // Hire a wedding planner. As a major stress reducer and a true quality-of-life boost, it’s well worth the price. Plus they can help you maximize your budget and alleviate a lot of the financial uncertainty.

Is there anything else that helps tell the story of the day?  As a bride without a mother, I was very emotional about celebrating my wedding without her. I can honestly say it was the best day of my life and I know she would have wanted me to enjoy it. For those out there who are missing loved ones, know that you will survive and you must make the most of the situation. Have fun and enjoy every moment in honor of those you have lost.

 

Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink
Photography: Bradley James / Event Planning & Design, Floral Design: Hey Gorgeous Events / Venue: Grand Rapids Downtown Market in Grand Rapids, Michigan / Officiant: Gust Bassianotis / Dress: Badgley Mischka / Shoes: Stuart Weitzman via Zappos / Earrings: Kate Spade / Suits: Jos A Bank / Shirt: Kenneth Cole / Tie: Skinny Tie / Stationery: Val Marie Paper / Rentals: Cascade Rental Center, Refunction Junktion Vintage Rentals / Music: Adrian Butler / Catering, Cake: Amway Hotel
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Sometimes you just need a break from wedding planning, and by Friday everyone is ready for a break anyway! So each week, we send you into the weekend with some of our favorite finds from around the web, from pretty products to tutorials to interesting articles, and whatever else strikes our fancy. We hope you enjoy, and of course have a happy, happy weekend!

The Bojon Gourmet | Cherry Vanilla Maple Shrub The Bojon Gourmet | Cherry Vanilla Maple Shrub

I had no idea what a shrub was until now, and I’m very interested in trying one.

Elbow patches never looked so happy.

You can own Holly Golightly’s apartment (for a mere $10,000,000).

This gorgeous dress just looks like summer.

DIY edible confetti in any color!

Plus easy confetti throwers.

Smitten with these delicate little bowls.

I can barely manage more than a ponytail, but this hairpin is gorgeous.

Great round-up of three-ingredient desserts.

Loving the color in this save-the-date from Mr. Boddington.

Also, to all of you in Hawaii – stay safe!

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From Angela: “I love this picture because it was a moment of bliss. The essence of candid. It pulls together everything great about our wedding day.”

 

From Russell: “I think this is right after our first kiss and we both look so happy, with all of our friends and family.”

 

Note: Russell and I picked our photos completely independent of each other! I can’t believe we ended up choosing almost identical photos!

 

Photos by The Mullers. See the full wedding feature right HERE.

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