I’m not sure what I love most about this wedding! The dreamy dress, the rustic venue, the woodland-inspired centerpieces… not to mention all of the frame-worthy photos from Les Loups of The Wedding Artists Collective, and event planning by Melissa McNeeley. Well, why don’t I let you decide: what do you love most about Daryn and Alex’s romantic, rustic wedding?!
Their first look was one of the couple’s favorite parts of the day.
The bride shares some of the traditions incorporated into the wedding: “We had a chuppah designed by Taylor of Fox Fodder Farm, which was stunning and so special to exchange vows underneath. We reinterpreted other traditional Jewish customs to create a ceremony that we could both really appreciate. For example, rather than having a standard ketubah, we were inspired to write our own marriage contract, which we read during the ceremony. We also had a nod to Russian traditions by having a toast with raspberry-infused vodka (which Alex made!) for all the guests before the dancing really got going, followed by his mom signing a Russian gypsy love song.”
Another favorite part of the day? “Taking ten minutes to be alone away from everyone after the ceremony, to absorb the reality and romance of the ceremony… and to appreciate that we did it! We got married and pledged to be each others’ support for the long haul. We had written each other letters, using spare wedding invitations and we took that time to exchange them. It was another lovely moment. “
A welcome sign was written onto a framed pane of glass. The outdoor cocktail hour was adorned with rich burgundy dahlias in sweet glass bud vases. “Fox Fodder Farm used a variety of vessels for the flowers,” says Daryn, “Which perfectly enhanced the space, design and the whimsical beauty of all the flowers!”
Images of woodland creatures were printed on book pages in lieu of table numbers. In addition to lush fall flowers, the tables were also scattered with acorns and purple artichokes.
How about this sweet touch? “We toasted with champagne coupes that we found even before getting engaged, and purchased with coins found around the house during the first few years of our relationship.”
Why did you choose this location for your wedding? We zoned in on Hudson Valley because of its charm and awesome culinary scene, history and beauty. Grasmere Farm was the first thing that Alex got truly excited about. We knew we wanted to have the ceremony and reception on the same grounds and we knew we wanted to have the wedding ceremony outside. The space was intimidating, because it was just a raw canvas that would take extra work. However, seeing how into it Alex was sealed the deal.
What inspired you when you were planning your wedding? We decided from day one that if we were going to plan a full on wedding, it would be done together, with a focus on truly celebrating what the big day was all about: having all of our loved ones together in one place to share in the celebration of our love, union and commitment. The outcome was just that! There were funky quirky elements reflective of our playfulness (like random Victorian portraits hung on the walls and the use of woodland creatures). We went for rustic elegance, wanting to give our guests a reason to get gussied up, but also to provide a space where they felt they could kick their shoes off and be themselves.
What was your favorite moment or part of the day? We can’t pick one… but we can narrow it down to three. The first was our first look… it was so amazing to see each other prior to the big event. It was full of emotion, love, raw feelings and laughter… it was an emotional high… cheesy but true. The second was post-ceremony when took ten minutes to be alone away from everyone. The last was walking into the reception and seeing all of our friends and family under one roof… one roof which looked (and sounded) AMAZING thanks to months of hard work and our amazing vendors.
What was the best advice you received as a bride? The day goes by so just enjoy every moment and put blinders on to the small imperfections, because no one else is noticing them.
What advice do you have for other brides? Remember what the day is really about… you and your soon-to-be husband professing your love and celebrating it with those nearest and dearest to you. Also, even if you are experienced, detail-oriented and creative, having an event planner is a worthwhile splurge… Melissa McNeeleyy was an invaluable resource of support, knowledge and creative enhancements.
Do you have any budget tips for other brides? There will always be unexpected expenses. // Don’t underestimate what you can find on etsy/ebay/flea markets. // Also, I managed to source a majority of the books used as props for free, because I noticed them in a display window at a retail store and asked if there was any chance I could use them once the display went down. I got lucky… and got a yes!