Over the years we’ve had ample opportunity to stare at thousands of gorgeous gowns, coming in all sorts of silhouettes, styles, lengths, and more. There’s no doubt that there are endless selections when it comes to your wedding day gown, so to make things a little easier we’ve rounded up a few of our favorites. The icing on the cake? All of these beauties are under $2000, with some as low as under $500! Prepared to be inspired, or maybe even find your perfect dress.
You might want to put aside some time for today’s wedding — it’s a bit of a doozie in the best way ever. Lara Hotz and Merci Bouquet worked with Lex and Dave to make their vision of a colorful massive party come to life, and every bit of the whimsical result is nothing short of perfection.
From the bride, Lex: The ceremony was emotional and happy. The reception was fun and a massive party, which is exactly what we always wanted. From the beginning we were calling it the after party. It was all really colourful, playful and a bit tongue and cheek — reference the tag lines attached to our flower vases at the reception).
The hens party was a crafternoon. Thanks to the help of some lovely ladies we boshed out; the aisle hearts, bonbonnierie, bunting, garlands, vases (and cheeky pick up tags). In our spare time we made confetti bags, table decor, “guest book” polaroid washing line, chair tags, winners ribbons for the MOB, GOB, FOB, MOB. My yia yia made spinach pies and my dad made rice pudding for the reception. Dave’s brother Isaac, the best man, took on the huge task of brewing 70 craft beers, which we branded ‘The Best Man Brew’. Dave selected and ordered all of the wine. DIY and BYO — how’s that for hands on!
Any advice for couples planning their weddings now? Be yourselves, we had so many people telling us that it was the best wedding they had been too because everything was so perfect for us. If you try to please everyone you will end up pleasing no one. We had lamingtons as our wedding cake, peanut m&m’s as our sweet almonds and hired our favourite chef to make his famous Rueben sandwiches. We chose these things all because we love them… and they were delicious and the day was perfect because of it. One more thing for the bride, I wish I looked up at Dave when coming up the aisle. It sounds obvious but on the day when you’re so excited and there are all these people you haven’t seen for a while you look at them. No one reminds you to look up and straight ahead at your partner.
Processional: “Turning Page,” Sleeping at Last (instrumental)
Recessional: “Use Somebody,” Hackney Colliery Band
Reception Entrance: “Home,” Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros
First Dance: “Sweet Disposition,” Temper Trap
Groomsmen tie + leather lapel flower
A short lace wedding dress sewn by your mother and marrying your beau outside a little pink cottage — does it get better than this? Brooke Schultz Photography, Charming Details, and Flower Afternoon put together some of their best work to bring us Kendra and Jeff’s wedding day, which is full of sweet little details but still intimate enough to feel like a heartfelt get-together among friends.
From the photographer, Brooke Schultz Photography: Kendra and Jeff wanted their wedding day to be completely relaxed, without stress so they could drink in every moment. So, they opted to have the reception the day before! They filled their wedding with sweet, handmade details, like Kendra’s wedding dress sewn by her mother, the ‘love you always’ patch added by Kendra on the back of Jeff’s tie, and the guestbook hand painted by the bride’s sister.
Kendra + Jeff found the perfect venue in This is The Place’s Brigham house, an adorable pink cottage with a gazebo fit for dancing. Vintage with a modern twist, Emmily with Charming Details and Val with Flower Afternoon created an old door backdrop prettied up by a floral garland. Guests took photos for the guest book in front of it and it did double duty for some beautiful bride and groom portraits as well. Despite the fact that it rained cats and dogs both days of their wedding celebration, they weren’t bothered and let themselves truly enjoy their wedding.
Don’t miss the highlights video from NP Films:
Event Design and Planning
Vintage Furniture Rentals
Vintage Plate Rentals
Linens and Flatware
We love courthouse weddings for many reasons, but one of the most prominent is how much flexibility they afford couples on their wedding day. For example, bride Natalie was able to pull of a knee-length baby blue wedding dress with a birdcage veil, and she couldn’t look any more adorable. Lavender & Twine captured all of the ceremony and the reception at Santa Barbara’s chic Wine Cask restaurant!
From the bride, Natalie: We really wanted an intimate, casual and fun feel for our wedding. The dress really helped to set the feel for the wedding as it was such a modern, and whimsical and unique dress that I had made. We are also big fans of California and Santa Barbara in particular and after we picked the Santa Barbara Courthouse as our wedding venue the succulent theme naturally followed. I made all the succulent wine corks, the straw flags and the succulents vases and my bouquet!
Any advice for couples planning their weddings now? It’s all about Etsy!!! Keep it simple. The more over produced a wedding is the more pressure people feel. Leave some room for organic moments to happen.
We had a very untraditional wedding so no official first dance or processional. The first dance happened organically and we now have “our song”.
Wedding Location: Santa Barbara, CA / Photographer: Lavender & Twine / Flowers: I did all the succulent corks myself. The Wine Cask did the roses, I made the succulents that were added to the vases as well as my bouquet / Ceremony Venue: Santa Barbara Courthouse Garden / Reception Venue: Wine Cask / Wedding Dress: Kcoline / Hair and Makeup: La Rouge / Groom’s Suit: John Varvatos / Ukranian Wedding Bread: Groom’s family / DJ: Jon Riddell / Stationery: The Paper Fairie
Kimberly and David’s California wedding is straight out of a retro dream: a short flirty dress from Ellana Couture, floral arrangements by friends and family, and images from Jaquilyn Shumate which capture everything to perfection. Peeping through these images was like stepping into a fifties fantasy world, so let’s get started on the journey, shall we?
From the bride, Kimberly: The feeling we went for was a 1950’s garden party full of personal touches that spoke to our style and passions. We aren’t super formal or fancy so it was important that our day reflected our comfortable and easy-going style.
Devin and I love to spend our free time treasure hunting at thrift shops and yard sales for antiques so it was perfect that our wedding was full of vintage goodness. We both adore all shades of teal, aqua, turquoise, and mint so any of these colors were approved. I love the way red and coral compliment these so we incorporated splashes of both as well. For months I scoured thrift stores, garage, and estate sales hunting down vintage milk glass and bottles for table decor. Etsy and Ebay were my best friends in finding the vintage 1950’s table cloths and antique camera’s. I am a photography junkie so I loved that the cameras spoke to this.
In order to stay on budget we did quite a few DIY projects: We painted furniture found at estate sales (and behind a dumpster believe it or not) that were used for our sign in tables. We caulked vintage milk glass plates to candle sticks for cake plates for our sweets table. We cut fabric into strips and tied them together to make a garland backdrop, then also attached them to lathe which was then attached to an existing arbor for the dance floor canopy. I made the boutonnieres for the groom and groomsmen out of ribbon glued to lapel pins of vintage cars and a Winnebago for my groom. I used my photo shop skills to make our table numbers, programs, various signs around the event, even our cake topper.
Any advice for brides planning their weddings now? If something becomes too stressful or difficult, don’t be afraid to chuck the idea. In the end no one else will know what details didn’t make it. If your family and friends want to help, let them. You will not only appreciate having less on your plate but the day is that much more meaningful for everyone when loving hands have pitched in to make it all happen. Most important force yourself to take a moment or two to just soak it all in. The big day will fly by and if you don’t make yourself savor a few special moments it will be a blur. Thank God for great wedding photographers!
Bridal Processional: “Close to You,” The Carpeneters
Recessional: “Happiness,” David Crowder Band
First Dance: “That’s How Strong My Love Is,” Otis Redding
Wedding Location: El Dorado, CA / Wedding Photographer: Jaquilyn Shumate / Ceremony Venue: El Dorado Community Church / Reception Venue: Brookshire Gardens / Wedding Flowers: Bride’s friends and family / Wedding Dress and Veil: Ellana Couture / Wedding Shoes: Shoes of Prey / Bride’s Earrings: Iloniti / Wedding Caterer: Bocca Catering / Wedding Invitations: Three Eggs Design
We’re closing the last post of the year with a huge thanks to all of you. 2012 was an incredible year for Ruffled and you played a huge role in making that possible. Everyone who gave time out of their daily lives – whether by sharing one of the most important days in your life with us, commenting on the site, sending us submissions, giving feedback or even just visiting us. The brides, grooms, and their friends and families who have been religiously following us everyday to the numerous professionals whose passion and talent is on display daily. We raise our glasses to you. We have some great things coming in 2013 and we look forward to sharing them with you in the coming new year!
With the thousands of fashion-conscious brides gracing our pages, choosing just ten is nearly impossible, but below is just a taste of how incredibly stylish our brides were in 2012. So in no particular order, here they are:
We’re simply teeming with joy to share this wedding workshop from The Carrs Photography with you all! Michael Carr put together an all-star cast of wedding pros, including Jenny Haas, The Ivy League, and Borrowed Vintage Event Rentals to make the perfect early winter woodsy shoot. The different textures are a particular favorite of mine, from the chevron cake to the striped ribbons to the bride’s faux fur jacket!
From the photographer and workshop mentor, Michael: I have always desired to blend my passion of teaching and photography together, and I finally felt prepared to do so this past fall. So after long deliberation and lots of brainstorming, Fancy Pants Workshops was created. With a bit of humor intended, the cheeky name is designed to make you smile, and also convey a strong sense of quality. Fancy can be different for every individual, but all photographers love fancy weddings. Your fancy might be a black tie wedding, or it might be a sunset wedding in a field. My “fancy” is not the same as yours, but we all love Fancy. Once the name was decided, I instantly knew I wanted and needed a talented stylist to come along side and give their expert touch to the photo shoot. Without hesitation I called Jenny Haas. The work she displays was exactly what I envisioned for this workshop, so when she said yes to my request, I did a little dance.
Our theme for this cozy styled photo shoot was “woodland/earthy.” We wanted to use colors and materials that reflected the soft, natural feel of fall, and include the beautiful colors of our favorite season like golden yellows, creams, and navy. Inspired to create something classy, but with a twist, Christina wore a short, flirty lace dress, collar necklace, polka-dot tights, and hand-made veil. Her style easily transformed by adding the faux fur jacket, a must for the fall, and removing the veil and necklace, creating a softer and comfier second look. For the grooms attire we wanted a layered look. We chose a striped green and navy tie to fit in with our colors, and a navy jacket with gray pants. We also added a grey sweater and a scarf, pieces that can be easily added or taken away when it is chilly outside.
The Ivy league, the florist we worked with, put together the most beautiful flowers in a can that Jenny painted cream, and they also matched the bouquet. I love how she added the accents of blue in the flowers, everything went perfectly with the autumn colors surrounding us. For the favor table, Jenny used glass jars to hold trail mix with a sign saying “for the trail back home” a clever slogan devised by Will, Jenny’s husband, that fit the theme perfectly. The sweetheart table was covered with moss, accented with doilies and succulents, wooden chargers under the plates, and a clear glass dome as the centerpiece. Lastly, the table linens were towels that Jenny cut down from Ikea, using two different patterns to break things up a bit. By including a rugged white barn, wide-open fields, and intimate pathways, each part of the session blended perfectly together to create an inspirational shoot for any bride who wants an outdoor fall wedding.
Shoot Location: Tipp City, OH / Photographers: The Carrs Photography and Jenny Haas Photography / Workshop Mentor: Michael Carr of The Carrs Photography / Event Design and Styling: Jenny Haas / Venue: Honey Creek Preserve / Wedding Flowers: The Ivy League / Wedding Dress: Ruche / Bride’s Jacket: The Spotted Moth / Bride’s Necklace: ModCloth / Wedding Shoes: DSW / Hair: Caralee Fox / Makeup: Sara Corona / Groom’s Sweater: H&M / Groom’s Jacket and Pants: Macy’s / Wedding Cake: elé cake co / Rentals and Decor: Borrowed Vintage Event Rentals / Moss-covered Deer Head: Jenny Haas & Haas Signs / Wedding Invitations and Paper Goods: Ruby and Willow
When we think of All-Star teams of wedding professionals, the lineup would run something like this styled shoot for Salt Lake/Park City Bride & Groom Magazine. With images from Leo Patrone, flowers from Honey of a Thousand Flowers, Emily Brooks Floral Design, La Fleur, and Artisan Bloom, and styling from Saucy & Kitsch, this shoot is sure to inspire any bride currently planning her own wedding.
From Samantha Gardner and Tessa Woolf of Salt Lake/Park City Bride & Groom Magazine: When dreaming up this feature for the summer/fall issue of Salt Lake/Park City Bride & Groom magazine, we were inspired by “the language of flowers” — we wanted to showcase blooms and greenery rich in symbolism and history. After all, the flowers brides carried were originally meant to each have meaning, not simply be a pretty posy.
We envisioned our model as the beautiful bookish type, sitting at a stately desk, studying flowers, herbs, and all things botanical. The Washington School House Hotel in Park City, Utah was the perfect location to execute our “educational” photo shoot. First built in 1889, it’s one of the last surviving original school houses in the U.S. and one of the oldest historical buildings in Park City. The hotel features the school’s original quarried limestone exterior, but the interior has been renovated to be a luxe urban-mountain retreat and boutique hotel.
To bring our inspiration to life, we teamed up with photographer Leo Patrone, event designers and stylists Saucy & Kitsch, and florists Honey of a Thousand Flowers, Emily Brooks Floral Design, La Fleur, and Artisan Bloom. With four gorgeous bouquets, props galore, and three little white dresses, we got to work. We set up shop in the hotel’s historic living room, featuring 16-foot ceilings, original antiques, a cozy fireplace, and a massive antler chandelier lacquered in white and layered with crystals. The posh setting and all-white atmosphere created a cool, serene backdrop for the photo shoot.
Sarah Winward of Honey of a Thousand Flowers created a lush bouquet of garden roses. Garden roses have been around since ancient times (paintings of the flowers dating back to the 14th century have been found in the Middle East), long before the modern day hybrid tea rose was introduced in the 19th century. Kellie Jackstien of Artisan Bloom mixed vibrant flowers including coral peonies, miniature green hydrangea, purple veronica and anemone, green and white parrot tulips, and yellow and red and green variegated ranunculus with French pussy willow for a colorful bouquet. Peonies are said to represent bashfulness but are also symbolic of devotion. Pussy willow branches come from willow trees which are associated with new beginnings.
Natalie Bernhisel-Robinson of La Fleur clustered spiked thistle, smooth succulents, soft hydrangea, paper-thin ranunculus, refined orchids, and delicate maidenhair fern for a texture-rich bouquet. Thistle is an ancient Celtic symbol of a noble birth and character. Throughout history, the meanings of orchids have included love, beauty, and strength. Florist and garden designer Emily Brooks Wayment of Emily Brooks Floral Design dreamed up an architectural bouquet including ranunculus, lotus pods, Green Eye roses, astilbe, lisianthus, hanging amaranthus, star of Bethlehem, and more. Ranunculus was first discovered in Persian gardens in the 1600s by an English traveler who shipped the blooms back to England, where they were welcomed with enthusiasm. Star of Bethlehem symbolizes hope, reconciliation, guidance, and purity.
Shoot Location: Park City, UT / Photographer: Leo Patrone / Creative Director: Samantha Gardner of Salt Lake/Park City Bride & Groom Magazine / Shoot Editor and Wardrobe Stylist: Tessa Woolf of Salt Lake/Park City Bride & Groom Magazine / Prop Stylists: Saucy & Kitsch / Flowers: Honey of a Thousand Flowers, Emily Brooks Floral Design, La Fleur, and Artisan Bloom / Dresses: Betsy Couture, Ivy & Aster, and Modern Trousseau via Lily & Iris / Jewelry: Katie Waltman Jewelry and Lanny Barnard Gallery / Shoes: Kate Spade / Hair and Makeup: Gabby Gabbitas / Shoot Venue: Washington School House Hotel
Whenever you have Richard Israel photographing your wedding day, you know your images aren’t just going to be pictures — they’ll be heirlooms. How else could you refer to these stunning shots from Erin and Adam’s Charleston wedding? Their big day was planned from across the globe and happened only 9 days after the bride returned from a two-year-long Peace Corps stint, which goes to show that in the world of weddings, no planning task is insurmountable!
From the bride, Erin: How in the world this relationship and wedding fell into place is beyond me. Let’s call it a miracle. Adam and I met many years ago at a party, laughed for hours, and then promptly disappeared from each others’ lives only to re-meet at a party several years later. Skip forward 3 months to when Adam finally asked me out on the same day that I found out I was leaving for two years to be a Peace Corps Volunteer across the globe. During the next 26 long months, we made many huge phone card and plane ticket purchases, but we made it! Nine days after my plane landed on American soil after I finished my Peace Corps stint (and I got a much needed haircut), we got married in a picture-perfect ceremony. It’s crazy, I know.
The planning of the wedding was a bit chaotic and messy. It was all done on the phone or by email since I was in a different country. At first, we were planning a 200-guest wedding to culminate with a bowling alley reception. Then our schedules changed, and we scrapped that idea (thankfully, as my only mental breakdown moment occurred when I thought of 200 people staring at me for hours… too much pressure!) to something more manageable – an invite list of 28 guests.
We combined professional bouquets and boutonnieres with grocery store bought flowers for the tables which were arranged by my sister, cousin and friend the morning of the wedding. Our save-the-dates and invitations were graciously designed and printed by Adam’s sister, Emily.I did my own hair and makeup and somehow didn’t end up looking like a hot mess by the end of the day. The cupcakes, on the other hand, did look a little like a hot mess. Don’t try to transport melting cupcakes in the heat of a Charleston summer!
I sent a picture of a table decoration that I loved to my mom, and she shopped for and planned everything with the help of my sister. My mom made my headpiece and belt based on a BHLDN one that wasn’t the right color. My mom also planned the menu and cooked everything for our guests (supplemented with a few sides from grocery stores). Without patient and helpful friends and family members, we could never have pulled off this wedding.
The wedding ceremony itself was a hilarious mess. Rings were forgotten (but sorted in the nick of time). No one told Adam, the officiant, and groomsmen that the wedding started, so they had to be fetched from the cabin by the photographer while the bridesmaids waited at the front of the ceremony. Adam put my ring on the wrong hand, but I was too nervous to notice. Our officiant was our friend Ben who made the ceremony so personal and funny. Our friend Jon played classical guitar during the ceremony (including music from The Princess Bride). Adam and I served communion to our guests during the ceremony, which I thought was a special thing to share with them. Afterward, we all enjoyed a homemade dinner together. After all the work planning this wedding from different countries, it somehow went off without a hitch. Adam and I ended our wedding day with grateful hearts to have spent the day celebrating with our closest family and friends.
Wedding Location: Charleston, SC / Wedding Photographer: Richard Israel / Wedding Dress: BHLDN / Bride’s Shoes: Zara / Bride’s Headband and Belt: Made by Bride’s Mother / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Anthropologie / Flowers: Charleston Flower Market / Venue: Toogoodoo Bluff Compound / Wedding Music: Jonathan Crissman / Wedding Invitations: Every Little Thing Studio
Even if I wanted to, I couldn’t keep myself from crushing on today’s bride’s wedding style. Her adorable Jackie O style short wedding dress, her bright orange bouquet, her shortie bridal veil, I love it all! Event planner Morgan Gallo went all out styling Ruth and Vinny’s Courthouse wedding, complete with a reception full of games, carnival inspiration, and the groom’s love of Captain America.
From the stylist, Morgan Gallo: Vinny and Ruth are such a genuine couple and wanted their wedding to really tell their guests who they were and what they loved as a couple and individuals. They wanted their wedding to be fun—a party. I remember meeting with them the first time to talk about the theme and Vinny was so excited to try to incorporate games in the reception because this was such a big part of his family time and Ruth wanted to have a carnival type theme because she loved the eclectic and colorful look so it couldn’t be any more perfect!
We started with the invitations that looked like a Carnival sign and ticket—we then wanted to incorporate many shades and textures and did so by shopping for fabric to cover mason jars and making custom napkins to add a pop of color to the tables. If you won a game, you got a prize! They wanted to have both of their cultures incorporated in some fashion and so both supplied the dessert table with the most popular Vietnamese and Mexican candies that their guests could take home in their goodie bags.
The cake topper is one of the cutest I have ever seen! The groom is a HUGE captain America fan and so they contacted a local etsy artist to do him ripping his military uniform off to reveal his Captain America insignia. We spent a LONG night up watching Grimm and making the adorable place card fan rounds. The bride got really crafty and made pinwheels and prop pieces (hats, glasses, mustaches, etc) to add height to the table and give guests an opportunity to really let their hair down and pose for the camera! Who needs a Photo Booth when you have the whole night to show off?!
Wedding Location: San Francisco and Sacramento, CA / Ceremony Venue: San Francisco Courthouse / Reception Venue and Caterer: Ten 22 / Wedding Design, Coordination, Paper Goods, and Reception Flowers: Morgan Gallo Events / Wedding Photographer: Alicia Gines Photography / Bride’s Bouquet: Mandy Scott Design / Cupcakes: Esther’s Cupcakes
Every once in a while, it’s nice to pull back from all the details, all the design, all the hubbubs that weddings can bring and focus on what they represent: the celebration of two people desperately in love. The elopement achieves exactly that, and it’s precisely what newlyweds Cami and Brady chose to do, hiring the talents of Sloan Photographers to capture them in their post-ceremony bliss. We couldn’t pass up the opportunity to share these amazing images shot in the desert of Nevada with you, and you’re soon to find out why:
From the photographers, Matt and Angie of Sloan Photographers: This was a super low key elopement! Bride and Groom got married in a LDS Temple and didn’t have a reception. We just shot them in the middle of nowhere. It was really amazing. The bride wore a short and adorable dress and cute old boots and had some fun rugs from Urban Outfitters that we used as props.
Shoot Location: Las Vegas, NV / Wedding Photographers: Sloan Photographers / Wedding Dress: Anthropologie / Bride’s Boots: Nordstrom Rack / Rugs: Urban Outfitters
We were absolutely tickled pink when we saw this wedding from the incredible Nancy Da Costa of Mango Studios. Newlyweds Jennifer and Jordan wanted to have a relaxed wedding reminiscent of 1950s cocktail parties, and we think it’s safe to say they achieved that! Keep an eye out for subtle pops of yellow and gray-blue in the bridesmaids dresses from BHLDN.
From the bride, Jennifer: We wanted the evening to reflect us, with a vintage 50’s inspired cocktail party. We wanted our guests to be relaxed so there was not a lot of formality. I didn’t really have one or two colours that everything matched. I just tried to keep within a palette I had chosen. Originally I wanted my bridesmaids in all different vintage dresses but it proved to be too hard and expensive to find so I picked the dress and they picked the colour.
I am a potter and have also gone to school for cooking. I made all the bud vases for the tables and the cake tiers. My Mum and I made the cupcakes and she made all the preserves for the favours. My brother in law is a wiz with design so he designed all of our labels and invitations. Oh and I made my bird cage veil.
We had originally decided to get married at Jordans parents house but took one tour of the McLean House at the Estates of Sunnybrook in Toronto and fell in love. It just fit so well with our 50s cocktail theme so well and I knew I wouldn’t have to do much decoration. There is a bit of nostalgia as well, Jordan’s Aunt and Uncle had been married there 16 years ago :)
Any advice for brides planning their weddings now? We had just over a year to plan and I loved every minute of it. I was not stressed for even a moment. My husband and I just tried to spread everything out so we weren’t doing too much in the last month. Try to savor every moment because it is only one day and it goes by far too fast.
Wedding Location: Toronto, ON, Canada / Wedding Venue and Caterer: Estates of Sunnybrook / Wedding Photographer: Nancy Da Costa of Mango Studios / Wedding Flowers: Phil Young of The Greenery Patch / Wedding Dress: Justin Alexander, “8465” / Hair Clip: Twigs and Honey / Bride’s Earrings: Dana Kellin / Bride’s Shoes: BHLDN / Bride’s Hair: Bunny Symonds / Makeup: Sonia Ryan / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: BHLDN / Groom’s Suit: Got Style / DJ: DJ Rudy of Wishes and Dreams Disc Jockey Service / Ceremony Music: Kathleen Long of Metamorphosis / Wedding Invitations: Brent Mills
With all the stress that goes into wedding planning, who can’t relate to wanting to throw all planning out the window and run off for a romantic elopement? Chloe — an international fashion designer — and her new husband James did just that, flying to New York City from their home in Bali for city hall nuptials with only their chauffeur and their photographer, Alison Conklin, as their witnesses. Oh, and that amazing short wedding dress? Designed by the bride herself, of course!
From the photographer, Alison Conklin: Staying at The Crosby Street Hotel in Soho, marrying in the New York City Hall, and dining privately with one another at the renowned 3 michelin star ‘Daniel’ on the Upper East side was truly their own dream wedding. Their elopement in New York City captured what they are all about, who they are, and what their priorities are – each other. Now all they have to look forward to is a 6 week honeymoon in London, Copenhagen, Venice, Florence and Rome before returning home to face the music… but for them New York will always be where it all happened.
From the bride, Chloe: James (Australian) and I (Danish) met 7 years ago in Switzerland. Only four days after meeting we moved in together in a beautiful part of the country called Neuchatel on the French border. One of the first travel dreams we ever shared was exploring New York City together. Seven years later and almost as many residing continents, we found ourselves living in Bali where James had established his hospitality businesses. The Island is a magical part of the world and this is where James decided to drop down on one knee at the amazing Bulgari Resort, Bali.
Both of our families are spread out throughout the world; Copenhagen, London, Jakarta, Sydney and Melbourne, and we began the arduous task of planning a big wedding in James’ home town of Sydney… with the Sydney Opera House as the intended backdrop. As the plans became larger and the tasks more onerous, the fun was beginning to diminish for both us. Then during an afternoon of planning, and after a couple of quiet martinis, I cautiously (and somewhat jokingly) suggested an elopement to New York. With a smile from ear to ear James said “absolutely” and before his glass hit the table we began to plan our true dream wedding. All we wanted was to spend the day together, eating, drinking and laughing. We felt from the bottom of their hearts that we had to bring the focus back on us, regardless of what anybody else wanted and to remember what we would want first and foremost from our day and that was to celebrate our love for each other, our love for traveling, and enjoying every moment of our day with each other.
With a last minute booking of flights, cities, and amazing hotels we left for New York both totally content and overwhelmed with excitement. However, some things could not be forgotten. Both of us are particular in our own dress and style, James had his suit privately tailored while I collaborated with a local designer to design my dress, coat, and veil – with neither of us discussing the details with each other until we helped each other to get dressed just hours before the nuptials. As Lazarus Douvos prepared my hair in our amazing one-bedroom suite at the Crosby Street Hotel, Krug Champagne and letters from friends and family began to arrive, as did the last minute bouquet and boutonniere designed by the FLORA NY in Tribeca, which showcased an array of blooms representing the New York season and exotic flowers. The day earlier James had surprised me with a white Louis Vuitton handbag, personalized with my new initials, which accompanied me on the day and I surprised him with the silver Tiffany cufflinks that he wore. Both totally unplanned. I doubt that we would have felt that same kind of confidence and deep trust in each other, had we not been bound so intimately by something so grand and so totally personal. In keeping with our spontaneous and no rules outlook we requested that Alison Conklin, the person responsible for the incredible photographs on the day, be our legal witness at the New York City Hall. So the three of us, along with our remaining wedding party, Ukranian chauffeur, Walter, headed for the financial district to get married.
Wedding Vendors (New York City, NY):
Whenever Geneoh Photography is on board for a wedding, it’s all but a guarantee that we’re going to fall in love. Maggie and Brett wanted their wedding day to be laid-back with a bit of a vintage flair, and Maggie’s amazing Priscilla of Boston dress helped her achieve that. How much do you love her vintage red polka dot gloves?
From the bride, Maggie: We wanted our wedding to feel completely “us” and embody everything we love about life and each other. We knew we wanted it to feel laid back but still sacred, quirky but still timeless, and above all else, completely us! We wanted all of our family and friends to feel comfortable since most all were coming from out of town. I think we were seeking to make it feel natural, bright, fun, and a little retro too :)
I would describe our wedding as quirky, vintage inspired, retro, relaxed, local (if that makes sense). We didn’t have a color scheme (I could never pick!) but we did try to gravitate towards red, teal, navy and grey. As far as theme, we thought it would be fun to focus on the “Minnesotan” aspect of it! For DIY projects, those were my favorite parts! We did all the following ourselves: wild rice packet favors, boutonnieres, shoe clips, hand sewn bow ties, barn wood signs, photo booth background, invitation assembly and all the table decor!
Any advice for brides planning their weddings now? Have a cocktail and take a deep breath! I think I took the small things too seriously (first time I’ve ever admitted that) but it all felt crazy important at the time. Make sure you and your fiancé feel comfortable with all the decisions you’re making. Everyone’s got an opinion, and you want to honor those as best you can, but make sure you are having honest, candid conversations with your fiancé, parents and all other important parties. I had some hard conversations with a lot of people, but in the end it made the day of carefree and drama free. Lastly, have fun with it as best you can! It’s only one time (hopefully) in your life that you get to be someone’s fiance and to plan a wedding. Make sure you are making it fun and being thankful for the people who are making you feel so special as a bride :)
Processional: “Hallelujah,” Leonard Cohen
Ceremony: It is Well With My Soul
Recessional: “All I Want Is You,” Barry Louise Polisar
Reception Entrance Song: “You’re My Best Friend,” Queen
First Dance: “You are the Best Thing,” Ray LaMontagne
Mother/Son Dance: “I’ll Be There,” Jackson 5
Father/Daughter Dance: “My Girl,” The Temptations
Wedding Vendors (Stillwater, MN):
Wedding Venue and Caterer: The Outing Lodge / Wedding Photographer: Geneoh Photography / Day-Of Coordinator: Jane Chronister / Wedding Flowers: Jackie of Just Bloomed / Bride’s Ceremony Gown: Blue by Enzoani / Bride’s Reception Dress: Priscilla of Boston, “Trish” / Bride’s Shoes: Poetic License / Bride’s Veil: Our Shop / Bride’s Gloves: Vintage / Bride’s Bracelet: Bride’s Grandmother / Hair and Makeup: Lacie and Julie of Japa Salon / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: J. Crew / Groom’s Suit: Ben Sherman / Groom’s Bow Tie: Pierrepont Hicks / Groom’s Boots: Red Wing / Ceremony Music: Dan Rodriguez and Megan Gilbertson / DJ: Krista of Adagio DJs / Wedding Cake: Cocoa & Fig / Invitation Letterpressing: Little Doris Press / Videographer: Ken Chang
We have no shame in telling you that we spent hours pouring over images from stylish brides and grooms featured this year, and trust us when we say there were thousands of gorgeous images to look through. So before we end up posting all of them, we stopped at 15, in no particular order. This best-of is chock full of gorgeous veils, gowns, and boys’ outfits, so get your pin it button ready! Be sure to click through each image for a peek at the original features.
3. Bali Destination Wedding shot by Laura Wellington, Dress by Collette Dinnigan
4. New Year’s Eve wedding captured by Ulmer Studios
See how we can go on forever? Any stylish bride and groom we may have missed? We’d love to know! Of course we have oodles more here in the photo gallery.
You might remember photographer Heather Jowett from this gorgeous ballroom wedding we featured a few months ago. Today she is back to share the most beautiful, down to earth intimate wedding. Ali + Marc are doctors living in Kansas City, but decided to fly back to their hometown of Chelsea in Michigan to have a small celebration with the people that matter most to them. It’s what Heather perfectly titles as a “Backwards Elopement” – they flew back home to get wedded with their close friends and family!
From Heather Jowett: Ali and Marc contacted me because they wanted to do something a little different with their wedding. They’re both doctors in Kansas City, but they had decided that for their marriage ceremony, they wanted to do something special, and intimate, with their closest family. Thus, the backwards elopement was born. The flew from Kansas City to Michigan to get married in the backyard of Ali’s childhood house. In attendance was only the bride and groom, each of their parents, the groom’s brother and his partner, the bride’s grandparents, and myself (well, Ali and Marc’s two adorable pooches were there as well, as is obvious in the pictures).
I’ve been photographing wedding for 6 years, and this was one of the most special things I’ve ever been asked to be a part of.
Most of the details were lovingly handmade by their families. Ali’s father agonized over the placement of the arbor he built for his daughter to get married under. The mothers baked delicious pastries and trimmed hydrangeas from Ali’s mom’s garden. They also conspired from Kansas City to Michigan on how to collect photos for a quilt they were going to surprise Ali and Marc with. Ali’s father even put together their super personalized cake topper, painting the dogs to match.
We all broke bread at the Common Grill in Chelsea, Mi, and while sitting at the table with them, their families made me feel like one of the gang, like I was meant to be there.
To me, what’s special about this wedding are the choices that lead up to it. The couple are both doctors. They could have afforded a lavish wedding in the grandest ballroom with 200 friends, family, and acquaintances in attendance. Instead, they chose to make it about themselves, their commitment, and their families, but at the same time, still make it beautiful.
Wedding Vendors (Chelsea, MI):
Venue: Bride’s Childhood home / Photographer: Heather Jowett / Caterer: The Common Grill in Chelsea, MI / Florist: The bride and groom’s mothers / Officiant: Groom’s father / Wedding Dress: BCBG / Shoes: Juicy Couture
Some may say that the wedding gown can describe a wedding. In this case they may be totally right, because this short and sweet gown by Melissa Sweet was the perfect match for an intimate fete at a quaint bed and breakfast in Olema. Shot by Diana Maire Photography, Heather and Tom handmade everything for their wedding – including the bouquets and boutonnieres!
From Diana Maire Photography: I loved this vintage inspired intimate wedding at the Olema Inn. The bride did a lot of details herself, including all of the flowers, and all of the pies! A lot of the other details were from Etsy vendors, or vintage from her family members. It was a really intimate wedding (around 30 people), and it was so laid back, heartfelt and lovely. All of the details were things they put a lot of thought into, such as the music they took months putting together, and included different styles than the typical wedding (lots of Iron and Wine, Band of Horses, Vampire Weekend, etc.). The zombie pie topper was a nod to the groom, who is still trying to convince the bride to do a zombie themed trash the dress session…
Wedding Venue and Vendors (Olema, CA):
Venue: Olema Inn / Photography: Diana Maire Photography / White lace bolero: maryandangelika on Etsy (I tea dyed this to match my dress) / Ivory Crystal and French lace headband: PowderBlueBijoux on Etsy / Shoes: Seychelles (I Do) Ivory / Wedding ring (Bride) purchased at Dianne’s Estate Jewelry in San Francisco / Wedding Band (Groom) purchased through Paris Von Rabenau Jewelers in Reynolds, Georgia / Necklace: bride’s grandmother’s / Dress: Melissa Sweet (Bronwyn) purchased at Glamour Closet in San Francisco and altered at Joanne’s Bridal Boutique in Alameda / Hair and Make-up: Clifford Hashimoto in San Francisco / Flowers: Purchased at San Francisco Flower Mart and DIY
I am always giddy to see what Abdi of Three Photographers has in store for us each time I hear from him. To curb my excitement, let’s get straight to the point. Christina and Mike’s farm wedding was a vegan fete filled with delicious handmade touches. And if you had any doubts about brides wearing glasses, Christina’s stylish look may very well convince you how gorgeous they look!
From Christina: Choosing the venue was a natural choice – Mike’s sister’s family lives on the beautiful farm and we knew right away it would be the perfect setting for both the ceremony and the reception. They live out in the country in Howell, Michigan. The only thing we had to rent was the tent (the barn was too small for the number of guests we had, though we did use it for the bar/hangout area) and tables/chairs.
Given the setting and our own aesthetic sense, we had a vintage-rustic wedding in mind to fit the mood of the horses, chickens, barns and fields of goldenrod that were our backdrop. We wanted to make sure the feel of our wedding was joyous and celebratory; we wanted every one of our guests to have fun.
We had a rustic countryside look to the wedding, with vintage personal touches like woodland-creature salt & pepper shakers, a tandem bike and hand-painted signs. The color palette was a mason-jar blue, goldenrod yellow and burlap brown. Most every detail of the wedding was DIY; we handmade the invites, bouquets, boutonnieres, signs, bunting, programs, cake-topper… almost everything!
Any advice for brides planning their weddings now? Think of the things that you and your bride/groom love and go from there – and don’t let anyone tell you what you’re “supposed” to do and not do! People want to see the you in your wedding. You won’t regret a thing if you stay true to yourself. Also, buy a short dress – hemming is a racket.
The wedding party came down the aisle to an instrumental (and very pretty) “Vitamin C” by Can. My entrance song was Erik Satie’s “Gymnopedie”, and the recessional was “Alone Again Or” by Love (also instrumental). Our first dance was “I Was Made to Love Her” by Stevie Wonder (chosen by my fiancee).
Wedding Vendors and Venue (Howell, Michigan + Brooklyn, New York):
Ceremony and reception location(s): family’s farm / Flowers: purchased at Whole Foods / Photographer: Abdi of Three Photographers / Wedding Dress: B. Ella Bridal / My veil was custom-made by Tia Mills / Wedding shoes: Seychelles / Bracelet: Banana Republic / Wedding bands: Stout Woodworks on Etsy / Hair and Makeup: done by a friend / Bridesmaid Dresses: J.Crew / Groom’s suit: tan jacket from Banana Republic, pants from American Apparel, an etsy-bought bowtie, and crow cufflinks / Groomsmen: gray pants and grey vests, with bowties (which happened to match the napkins) and rolled-up sleeves / Music: ceremony and cocktail hour by The Fiendish Thingies (contact Ray Thompson, 248.508.1957); ambient dinner music provided by Kindle (contact Jason Worden, 248.259.4332), and post-dinner dance music by the Zydeco Hepcats (contact Mike Zeigeler, 586.871.6465) / Caterer: all-vegetarian menu by Katherine’s Catering, and we couldn’t have been happier / Wedding Cake: made by bride’s mother Denise Babinski who is a pastry chef; two carrot cakes on the side and for the main cake, a french vanilla with butterscotch custard filling. She has no website but anyone interested can contact her: 586.216.3738. They also had vegan salted chocolate cake pops made by my friend Allie Jenkins, a young budding pastry chef (989.715.2091) / Wedding favors: caramel apples provided by local Blake’s Orchard/ / Wedding invitations: made by the groom, who drew and watercolored the invitations (and programs), which were inspired by their running comic Snacks the Bunny, inspired in turn by their rabbit Ferdinand. / Videographer: friends
Monday couldn’t come fast enough to share the scrumptious weddings that we have lined up for this week. To start the week off right, we have a super creative DIY wedding shot by the ladies from Love Me Do Photography, a seasoned Ruffled photography team based in Philly. Amy and Stephen handmade all of their decor and incorporated lots of family heirlooms and vintage items — including Amy’s mother’s wedding dress, which was altered for Amy. They used Philadelphia as their main inspiration throughout their wedding, including their brownstone skyline in their stationery and vintage map confetti toss. You’re missing out if you don’t check all images from this wedding in the galley!
From Amanda of Love me Do Photography: Stephen and Amy had a down-to-earth and sincere, thoughtfully-handcrafted Philadelphia wedding inspired by our loving families, local history and passion for adventure. They set out to create a lively and heartfelt backyard garden party where guests felt like participants – not members of an audience. Stephen had all three of his brothers as his “Best Men”, Amy’s short wedding dress had pockets, their cake was 65 inches long and their “getaway car” was a bicycle pedicab. Our venue, tucked away on a tiny street in the middle of downtown Philadelphia, was warm and inviting with antique clocks, portraits of presidents past and ivy covered brick walls..
Some details from the bride, Amy :
My mother made my wedding dress and jacket using lace from her very own wedding dress. She sewed a 2011 penny into the pocket for good luck, and as a nod to Benjamin Franklin.
Stephen’s dad was our officiant and my uncle performed the same song that he played at my parent’s wedding 31 years ago. Bouquets were wrapped with my grandmother’s handkerchiefs.
Table assignments were printed on slides from Stephen’s collection of travel slides and the guestbook was fashioned from an old atlas.
Each guest received a jar of locally-sourced Hives for Lives honey accompanied by family recipes. 100% of the profits from this honey go to help beat cancer, a cause that is near and dear to our hearts.
Love Me Do Photography, a seasoned Ruffled photography team based in Philly. Amy and Stephen handmade all of their decor and incorporated lots of family heirlooms and vintage items — including Amy’s mother’s wedding dress, which was altered for Amy. They used Philadelphia as their main inspiration throughout their wedding, including their brownstone skyline in their stationery and vintage map confetti toss. You’re missing out if you don’t View all images from this wedding
Wedding Venue + Vendors (Philadelphia, PA):
Bike cab: Chariots of Philly / Bridal dress: Julie Chidichimo / Cake: Katie Lanciano / Caterers: Birchtree Catering / Cookies: Lou Hahn / Dinner napkins: Barb Saxton / DJ: No Macarena / Embroidery hoops: Debra Touchette / Flowers: Whole Foods Plymouth Meeting / Hair: Snip / Invitations: Andy Schulz / Makeup: Tracy Lopez / Photobooth Backdrop: Nina Chidichimo / Photographers: Love Me Do Photography / Venue: Colonial Dames PA Headquarters / Videographer: Chris Carlone / Books for centerpieces: The Book Thing in Baltimore / Wedding Dress: vintage Amy’s mom
There are so many things to love about this wedding. One of them being from a quaint little place in England. Captured by Kyle Hepp, this gem of a wedding has the whole package with plenty of steal-worthy ideas. We’re loving Sarah’s added polka dot tulle overlay that her friend made for her to customize her gown. Read on for more deets!
From the bride, Sarah: [I wanted] an informal and quintessentially British day in a beautiful rustic location with good food and wine. We wanted family and friends to feel part of the day and asked many to help out in a variety of ways. We also wanted something very personal which represented us and would be lots of fun. We therefore designed lots of decorations ourselves and asked guests to dress in their best vintage classics.
We wanted a vintage, British, retro, English village fete, colourful, inclusive wedding. The venue was local to where groom’s parents live, and was recommends by local friends from the Surrey Oaks village pub. We wanted a venue with beautiful outside space so the ceremony could be in open air, and we got lucky with the weather!
We had lots of DIY. The tea length wedding dress was partly made by a friend, bunting was specially designed and made, all decorations put up by friends and family who also provided some of the food. Stationery was all made by the groom. Local village contacts provided music and food.
Processional: Somewhere Beyond the Sea by Bobby Darin.
Recessional: just a song choosen by our new Orleans style jazz band.
First dance: Jonny Be Goode by Chuck Berry played by The Firetones rock and roll band
Wedding Vendors (Surrey county, England):
Ceremony and Wedding Reception: Norwood Place Farm / Florist: Charlie Ryrie from the real cut flower Garden who grows native English flowers in Herefordshire countryside / Photographer: Kyle Hepp / Wedding Dress: Basic dress and birdcage veil: Candy Anthony; polka dot tulle overlay made by a talented friend / Shoes: Vivienne Westwood /Jewellery was brides own, hair and makeup done by herself / Bridesmaid Dresses: Vivienne of Holloway 1950s dresses / Groom’s suit: Walker Slater / Groomsmen wore own suits. All hats by Lairds of London / Band: Frog island jazz band for New Orleans style jazz during the ceremony and drinks reception, no website. The Firetones rock and roll band for evening dancing / Caterer: Jan Sturges, local family friend / Wedding Dessert: Berry and cream pavlova for dessert, White chocolate wedding cake from Waitrose and pie cake from Mrs Kings and Chitty / Wedding invitations: We did them. We had a photo of the venue which we edited using photo editor to look like a 1950s railway poster and printed this on A5 vintage cream card. We tied up the card with accompanying info using red and White bakers twine. / Transportation: No, just local taxis, though a vintage car had been hired which failed to show up and therefore the bride was late! / Celebrant: groom’s sister, Kate.
This New York City wedding reads as an expert’s guide to how to properly integrate pops of color into your wedding day. The bride, Bethany, used a gorgeous and rich teal motif throughout all details of her big day, right down to her very own wedding gown! If you’re a big fan of peacock feathers (and even if you’re not!), be sure to check out all the images from Joyeuse Photography.
From the bride, Bethany: We love all things vintage & handmade, so we wanted our wedding to reflect that. (especially 1950s & 1960s era!) We love that both vintage & handmade goods are more sustainable than buying things new and it is one of our values to be as sustainable and socially responsible as possible in terms how we shop, or decorate our home, or plan our wedding. Plus, we love the aesthetic. We also have an incredibly talented & close knit community and we wanted our wedding to be a reflection of our community as well. Almost every detail of our wedding was covered in the fingerprints of our friends & family, and that made it feel so much more special.
I love the deep rich colors in peacock feathers so we decided to use a peacock feather as our color inspiration. In terms of DIY projects, we tried to hand make as many elements as we could. Jerod drew our cameos and used them to design our save the dates & programs. He and I also handmade our invitations from tiny glass bottles we collected on a magical beach in Brooklyn. (We also used bottles that we found there as the vessels for the flower arrangements at the reception). As everyone came into the church for the ceremony, they received a tiny flag to wave which had been stamped with “b & j” or “love”, which friends and I made using letters from an antique printing press and a mix of vintage fabrics and scrap fabrics in peacock colors. We used the same fabrics to make the bunting, strung throughout the reception space. The garlands of crocheted yarn, strung from the ceiling of the reception space, were made by my aunt, my brother-in-law, one of my bridesmaids, and me.
As one of my bridesmaid gifts, I made 12 different hair pieces for each of the girls to wear (with help from my mom!). For the guestbook, we had the ribbon on my grandma’s antique typewriter replaced, and the hand-typed notes that we came home with were so special! The incredible boutonnieres for the groomsmen were made by my dear friend, bridesmaid and crafter, Kylie Fife. It was truly a community affair, which made it such an emotional and incredible experience to walk into the reception site for the first time and see all the beauty.
Jerod and I designed the “message in a bottle” invitations and made them using 200 tiny antique bottles we scavenged on a Brooklyn beach. We printed the paper invitation component ourselves on quarter sheets of teal paper, and tied and bottle neck with twine. We attempted to hand deliver as many as we could, but the ones that were mailed even managed to make it to South Africa intact!
Any advice for brides planning their weddings now? Accept help! Sometimes this can be difficult to ask for or accept, but once I began delegating and letting people help me, the load felt so much lighter, he the outcome so much more beautiful. Secondly, the wedding is so important, but ultimately, the wedding is a precursor to the marriage, so don’t lose sight of prioritizing that! Throughout our engagement, Jerod and I had at least 1 night a week in which we did not talk about the wedding planning at all, which was really refreshing and important for us.
And everyone says this, but try to really be present on the day of. So many people had told me that their wedding day felt like a blur and it was my desire to really be present, relish in it, and take it all in, especially because we had so many friends in from all over the world that we rarely get to see. After all, when again will you have all the people that you most treasure and love in the same room? I feel like we were really able to do this and it made the memories of the day so sweet and priceless.
Processional: “Sigh No More,” Mumford & Sons
Recessional: “Forever Young,” Bob Dylan
First dance: “When It Don’t Come Easy,” Patty Griffin
Wedding vendors (New York City, NY):
Ceremony venue: St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Williamsburg, Brooklyn / Reception venue: 320 Studios / Wedding photographer: Tahni of Joyeuse Photography / Wedding flowers: Leeanne Rickey / Wedding dress: designed by bride, made by Heather Anderson / Makeup: Stephanie Wise / Wedding hair: Felicia Nelson / Groom’s suit: Calvin Klein / Wedding music: Jake Armerding, Gregory Essington, Laura Rogers, and Brian Miller / Wedding cake: Laura Huss / Wedding invitations: bride and groom
This bride’s North Carolina event is everything we love about farm weddings. Full of personal details, handmade charm and cheeky surprises along the way, it’s the kind of vision that makes you want to step out into the countryside for the weekend — or is that just me? The bride and groom planned their wedding date around Matt Miller of Our Labor of Love‘s availability, and I can’t say I blame them. There’s so very much beauty to behold, so run on over to the gallery when you can!
From the bride, Stephanie: We wanted guests to feel as if they were in an outdoor version of our home as they arrived and enjoyed the evening. We hoped they would have little surprises as they walked around. Postcards on a vintage table to write a well wish beside a typewriter with a personal welcome note. A smile booth and tons of props to enjoy and share giggles. A candy table with huge glass jars full of licorice, sweet tarts and nerds to take home and enjoy. As well as little rosemary trees to take, plant and remember the love we all share. Most of all we wanted 28 and 78 year olds to enjoy laughs, tears and dancing together!
We didn’t start out with a rigid color scheme or theme. Looking back I’m not sure we ended with any sort of theme either. Luckily I have some very crafty friends and family that helped make our DIY visions come to life. We had a ball collecting vintage tin cans, apothecary jars, milk glass and thread spools. And spent many crafty nights embroidering table numbers, making tissue paper flowers and fashioning little twisted metal loops to spools to use as escort card holders. It was so much fun to be together every weekend, weeks on end. I think the DIY wedding is the only way to go. Not only do you end up with something personal in the end but you grow in friendships and love the whole way through.
Any advice for future brides? I would recommend picking your top 3 most important aspects of your wedding. This is where most of your budget will go. Ours was photographer, venue and music. We didn’t set a rigid budget which I’ll admit was nice but it can quickly get out of hand. I recommend brides write out a strict budget, broken down into each wedding requirement. It is a daunting task, I know, but you will be so happy to have it. There will be certain things towards the end you’ll want to “throw” your money at just to see go away, so start out smart from the beginning.
Bridesmaids’ procession: “All I Want Is You,” Barry Louis Polisar
Procession: “Scenic World,” Beirut
Recessional: “It’s Oh So Quiet,” Betty Hutton
First dance: “First Day of My Life,” Bright Eyes
Wedding Vendors (Charlotte, NC):
Wedding Venue: Carrigan Farms, Mooresville NC / Wedding Photographer: Matt Miller of Our Labor of Love / Wedding Coordinator: Maurisa Beaver of Momentous Events Charlotte / Wedding Flowers: Taylor of The Place for Flowers / Wedding Music: Adam Huffsteler / Officiant: Will Morgan / Wedding Caterer: Doug Carrigan of Carrigan Farms / Wedding Cake: Charlotte Wedding Cake / Wedding Dress and Veil: Justin Alexander / Wedding Shoes: Steve Madden / Wedding Hair: Sasha Taylor of Cirrus Salon / Makeup Artist: Elizabeth Tolley / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Anthropologie and etsy / Wedding Invitations: Kevin Taylor
I’m utterly in love with this bride’s wedding dress, so imagine my surprise when I found out it was designed and made by — wait for it — her own mother! This wedding has just the right touch of pinks and purples to add a vintage flair and Provençal allure. Be sure to take a peek at the rest of the images in the gallery! Thank you Stacie and Geoff of Lang Photographers for sending this gem of a wedding our way.
From the bride, Amber: It was crazy how it all came together. I hadn’t thought about what theme I’d want my wedding to be until right before Mark and I got engaged and all of a sudden I was stalking all the wedding blogs (Ruffled being my number one site to go). I knew for sure I wanted an outdoor reception and having it in the backyard of the house I grew up in was a no-brainer! My favorite store of all time is Anthropologie and having helped one store with its grand opening, I was inspired with all the do-it-yourself projects.
I grew up doing crafts and sewing, all of which I learned from my mother dear. I just wanted it to be an experience for people when they came to celebrate with us. I wanted it to be magical and for them to think “Oh! That’s so “Amber”!” I didn’t want people to feel that it was so formal but that they could stay and hang out and eat some delectable sweets. I’m extremely opinionated and I’m pretty sure I thought about each tiny minuscule detail for hours! So, I would say the style was vintage with a twist.
Any advice for brides planning their weddings now? I just did as much research as possible so I could make sure everything was what I wanted. When I’d find something I liked online, I would copy the picture and paste it into iPhoto. Then I organized the photos into folders: Bride, Groom, Bridesmaids, Children, Decorations, etc. Oh and before that, I had a wedding ring folder so I showed Mark my top choices and then he made the final decision. Then, once I decided on colors, I went and got paint cards at Lowes, a bunch of each color, and passed them out to family to keep with them and if they saw anything in those colors (fabric, dresses, ties, decorative things) to get them! I did have a few things that didn’t go my way and I worried about it for a while. So, I would suggest to try to let things go, big or small, and just have a blast on the actual day! Oh, and definitely treat yourself with massages, waxing, facials, and spray tans so you feel relaxed and beautiful for the wedding.
Wedding Vendors (Mesa, AZ):
Ceremony venue: LDS Mesa Temple / Reception venue: private residence / Wedding photographer: Lang Photographers / Wedding coordinator: Sandy Hestand / Wedding flowers: Sandy Hestand / Wedding dress: made by bride’s mother / Wedding shoes: Steve Madden / Earrings: Anthropologie / Wedding veil: made by bride’s mother / Wedding makeup: Chelsee Hunt / Wedding music: Justin Nichols: Wedding catering: Sandy Hestand / Wedding invitations: Jenny Stott / Videographer: Lang Photography
This wedding seems to be one of the most fun-filled days yet, with games aplenty for guests, both dogs and cats roaming around, and fireworks to round out the evening. The cutest detail? The bride and groom stood in a circle of flowers and shared their vows to each other in whispers. Thank you to the fantastic Julian Beattie for sharing his photographs with us!
From the photographer, Julian: This wedding was absolutely PACKED with details and awesomeness. It was held on a 100% organic avocado farm with a 100% vegetarian menu – a “carefree” ceremony where they whispered their vows .. and yeah, I could go on.
From the bride, Bek: Our wedding idea revolved around a vintage garden party – with cocktails and fun games in the afternoon then a long Italian style feast in the evening followed by dancing!
We had a splash of red going for the color scheme – red & white polka dot bunting, ribbons, table runners etc, mostly red flowers, drinks with red & white candy-striped straws, and of course I wore red shoes…
I am an artist & graphic designer, so I did all of the invitations, menus, name & table no. tags plus LOVE/JOY! tags on drinks & wine bottles. My family helped me put together all the bonbonniere packets (gifts of Baci chocolates in brown paper bags) with name tags and ribbons. I hand painted all of the signs on old bits of wood found around our farm. My mum and I also made red & white polka dot bunting. My partner (Rob) and his dad and friends renovated an old dairy bails on our farm to use as the kitchen/bar/lounge area. Plus they made the wooden benches (or ‘pews’) for the ceremony out of camphor wood from our farm. And a huge outdoor banquet table. The whole thing was pretty much a massive DIY project!
Any advice for brides planning their weddings now? Make sure that whatever you do for your wedding day – it is what you and your husband-to-be would LOVE. And I recommend doing as much of it as you can with friends and family to help as this makes it a very unique and personalized event — make it a fun craft project! (Oh, and definitely get people to help where you can!)
Wedding vendors (Byron Bay, Australia):
Ceremony and reception location: Private Property / Wedding photographer: Julian Beattie of Kariz-Matik / Day-of wedding coordinator: Jane Magnus from Byron Bay Weddings & Events / Wedding flowers: Estelle Montlouis of The French Petal / Wedding dress: made by bride’s friend / Bride’s headpiece: Johanna Johnson / Earrings: Sweet Papillon / Stockings and cardigan: Alannah Hill / Wedding shoes: Chelsea Crew / Wedding hair and makeup: Stephanie Hosking / Flamenco musicians: Passion Flamenca / Wedding catering: Seaweed Cuisine / Wedding desserts: k’pane / Wedding invitations: Dolores Cupcake
The bride’s vintage pin-up hairstyle, the flower girls’ poofy skirts, the intimate ceremony venue… all of these things add up to perfection. Steven Elmer picked up this wedding and knocked it out of the park — every image is a peek into how special the day truly was for the couple and their guests. There are loads more photos to be seen in the gallery, so don’t miss it!
From the bride, Tegan: More than anything we wanted a very relaxed, family-based wedding that children, including our own two girls, would be happy to be a part of. We went for a bright garden party style of reception at our place where everyone could be comfortable and enjoy each others’ company. There was also a bit of a retro feel that came from our love of 50s style, tattoos and rock ‘n’ roll.
Homemade, retro, casual, family, fun, rockin’ are a few of the adjectives I’d use to describe our wedding. We didn’t really have a theme, though we did use a lot of red, blue and yellow in our decorations, the central colours used in old school tattoos that we both love. We also had a bit of a retro 50s style running throughout the day, which wasn’t planned but came about from our own personal style.
There were a lot of DIY aspects to our wedding. We had the reception at home in our yard so all of the decorations were done by family. Most of the food was also made by family and friends, something we really wanted from the get-go because there are so many delicious things we love and grew up eating! My father-in-law did a special wedding homebrew beer, complete with custom labels, to celebrate the occasion as well! I made the flowers for my bouquet and my fantastic sisters and sister-in-law finished it off for me so that I had one less detail to stress over!
Tegan’s advice for future brides: I know everyone always says don’t stress over everything, accept help from anyone who offers etc, etc. But I also know from experience that it’s hard not to get wound up and try and do everything yourself! What I will say is the day before your big day do as little wedding-related stuff as possible. Go out for dinner and talk about everything but the wedding, spend time on your own reading a book, watching a movie or whatever. What is going to be will be and there is no point trying to change or finish anything last minute! Enjoy some wedding free time and on the day if things aren’t set up exactly how you wanted or the samosas don’t get served (yep, happened at my wedding), what does it matter? You’re marrying the person you love!
Steven Elmer picked up this wedding and knocked it out of the park — every image is a peek into how special the day truly was for the couple and their guests. There are loads more photos to be seen in the View more images from this wedding
Processional: “(If You’re Wondering If I Want You To) I Want You To,” Weezer
Registry signing songs: “You’ll Never Walk Alone,” Gerry and the Pacemakers and “You’ve Got to Hide Your Love Away,” The Beatles
Recessional: “Fatally Yours,” Alkaline Trio
Wedding vendors (Brisbane, Australia):
Ceremony location: Macarthur Park / Reception location: Private residence / Wedding photographer: Steven Elmer / Wedding dress: “Sally” from Fancy New York / Head scarf: Vivienne Westwood / Wedding shoes: Vivienne Westwood / Wedding desserts: homemade / Wedding invitations: made by bride / Bride’s earrings: Johnny Cupcakes / Bridesmaids’ dresses: bridesmaids’ own / Groom’s suit: Ben Sherman
This wedding brings together the best of all words — one part rustic, one part vintage, and just enough femininity to set our hearts aflutter. How absolutely adorable is the bride’s setup of shoes for the day? There’s something to be said for preparedness! Don’t miss the gallery to check out more images from the fabulous Michele M. Waite!
From the bride, Carly: We wanted our wedding to feel cozy and warm, not too fancy, but still with a little luxury. The rustic charm and outdoorsy feeling of Willows Lodge is one of the reasons we chose it.
Rustic, Vintage, Spring, Earthy, Lovely, and Sweet describe our day. Our color scheme was peach with pale blue and mint. We also used beige/champagne as a neutral. I also love patterns and fabrics, so I used a lot of those too.
Any advice for brides planning their weddings now? Don’t be overly stressed about details, they may seem important now but they won’t be high on your priority list on the day of… and delegate tasks for the day of and allow yourself to enjoy your day!
Processional: Michael Buble, “Everything”
Recessional: The Temptations, “My Girl”
Wedding vendors (Woodinville, WA):
Wedding venue: Willows Lodge / Wedding photographer: Michele M. Waite / Wedding flowers: Fleurt / Wedding Dress: Justin Alexander / Ceremony shoes: Bourne / Reception shoes: Daniblack / “Later on” shoes: Seychelles / Rain boots: Dav / Hair accessories and lace gloves: BHLDN / Earrings and right-hand ring: Anthropologie / Necklace: Terrain / Hair and makeup: Ola Salon / Bridesmaids’ dresses: chosen by bridesmaids / Groom’s suit: J. Crew / Ties: Tie Obsessed / Groom’s shoes: Santoni / Wedding musician: Joe Pereira / Wedding catering: The Barking Frog at Willows Lodge / Desserts: Top Pot / Cake topper: Lollipop Workshop / “Be Calm and Marry On” sign: And the Sign Says / Wedding invitations: designed by bride
This week’s picks from Recycle Your Wedding are so perfectly vintage-y down to the little bow on the emerald green shoes. If you can’t find what you’re looking for, fret not. You can list your Wanted items to let others know what you’re interested in purchasing. Brides, planners, florists, or anyone with a room full of decor that they no longer need list their items. You can edit and delete your listings at any time once you’ve sold your unwanted items. Easy peasy.
5 manzanita branches, $25 for 5; Dolly Couture tea length wedding dress, $250; mercury glass taper and pillar candle holders, (available after August 28) $200 for lot of 30; Hobbs green wedding shoes, $100AUD
We’re always so tickled when we hear a photographer say their couple found him through Ruffled! Precious couple Jenny and Keith ran into the misfortune of rain (and tornado warnings!) on their wedding day, but the pictures from Gabe Aceves make it evident the newlyweds didn’t let the rain put a damper on their day. Bride Jenny was even fortunate enough to have two pairs of bright red shoes on hand — wedding day flats and lifesaver wellies! Have you ever seen a couple so smitten with each other? Enjoy the rest of the images in the gallery and make sure you check out the bride and groom’s cute blog!
From the bride, Jenny: Neither of us had ever really considered the actual details of getting married -– it seemed so easy when we were scheming our imaginary ideal wedding day before it became a reality! So we started planning the big day on a bit of a back foot -– and looking through false-veneered bridal magazines were sadly not of any help. The main thing we focused on was that it was important for us to have something personal that utilized our creative talents, and with that came the acceptance that things were not really going to follow the conventional route of traditional weddings. The big things for us were doing a lot of things DIY, making our wedding environmentally friendly, exploring our love of all things vintage, making sure we had enough time with our close friends and family, and never losing that “sense of self” that really makes the best weddings special.
The color scheme was something we both had trouble deciding on. All I knew was that we wanted a “vintage spring feel” and that didn’t necessarily come with it’s own Pantone number. The theme was “vintage adventure,” and having happily found inspiration on several blogs that seemed to “get” what we wanted (including Ruffled!), we started by gathering picture references to start crafting out what we wanted. As two creative people well-versed in planning events on a shoestring budget (we both worked for an indie record label, it’s a necessity), to keep costs down we decided to do many things ourselves when it came to the “look” of the wedding –- from the invites and website to the table decorations, menus, seating placements and cake topper.
Keith is the graphics master, so he handled all the design aspects of the wedding, taking the feel of what we wanted for the style and running with it, designing the invites, website, menus and even “Welcome brochures” for our guests staying in the area all consistent (my dad later referred to this in his father of the bride speech as “building our own brand”!) While the big things like venue/food were inevitably the most important, I am a details person and for us it was the little things that really brought the wedding to life. We had a “Treats” table filled with candy that guests could put in hand rubber stamped bags, in lieu of favors. We had a vintage suitcase with parcel tags with guests names on, to guide them to their seats, and matching tag place settings that, unplanned by us, many guests attached to themselves as name tags during the night.
All the plates and silverware were made of sustainable and recyclable bamboo. The gifts table had a vintage suitcase with a mini “Thank you” banner on it for cards, and an illuminated globe. Each table was named after a place of significance for Keith and I, with the story of its relevance typed in Ikea frames that we “distressed” to look vintage. We had postcards on each table with a blue mason jar of colored pencils for guests to write messages to us instead of a guest book, that they hung on a string of beads hanging in the reception hall. People blew bubbles for our exit down the aisle instead of confetti. Although at times it felt that we were in the middle of a 5-year-old’s birthday party rather than a wedding, I think it only added to the fun (and the open bar helped).
Any advice for brides planning their weddings now? While you may be able to do everything yourselves, don’t feel you need to. Try to stay focused on the reason you are doing this in the first place -– because you love each other and want to start your life together -– and not get too buried by the sheer wall of baffling bridal nonsense that so often sends brides (and grooms)-to-be crazy. Stay true to what you want -– it’s your day after all. Even if you’re an unconventional bride, it’s ok to spend time on yourself making sure you have everything you want, and that you both are happy with how you look, even if it feels a little self-indulgent — the photos will stay with you for life.
Don’t dwell on the people who can’t be there and why, put your attention on the people that made the effort to come. Make sure your inclement weather plan includes an umbrella that will look good in pictures. What is right for one couple may not be right for you, so remember the people you have coming to share the big day will roll with whatever you want to do. And plan an open bar. Whatever worries you have and gripes guests might get will be washed away after a few free drinks!
Gabe Aceves make it evident the newlyweds didn’t let the rain put a damper on their day. Bride Jenny was even fortunate enough to have two pairs of bright red shoes on hand — wedding day flats and lifesaver wellies! Have you ever seen a couple so smitten with each other? Enjoy the rest of the images in the See the rest of the wedding here
Processional: Ingrid Michaelson, “Can’t Help Falling In Love”
Readings: Ryan Adams, “My Love For You Is Real”
Recessional: Starship, “Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us Now”
Bridal party’s reception entrance: “Mariachi El Bronx”
Bride and groom’s reception entrance: Huey Lewis and the News, “Power of Love”
First dance: The Swell Season/The Frames, “Falling Slowly”
Wedding vendors (Middleburg, VA):
Ceremony and reception venue: Briar Patch Bed & Breakfast Inn / Wedding photographer: Gabe Aceves / Wedding Coordinator: Henriette Buell of Buelltiful Events / Flower arrangements: family friend / Wedding dress: Dolly Couture / Bridesmaids’ dresses: Courtesan Boutique / Groom’s suit: Calvin Klein / Groomlady’s dress: Moon Collection / Felt boutonnieres: made by bride / Wedding musician: Matt Moody / Wedding catering: Barn Door BBQ / Wedding cake: Market Salamander / Wedding invitations: done by groom
We’re kicking off the week with a charming and witty vintage wedding captured by Melissa of Fresh In Love Photography. Emily’s vintage wedding dress, veil and makeup evokes her perfectly adorable bridal Twiggy from the 1960s. The groom, James, designed their wedding stationery, from posters to invitations. If you think that was plenty of cute for a wedding, check out their pooch Oliver as the ring bearer. It may or may not have stolen the show.
James and I have known each other for 14 years, and although anyone close to us could have told you that we were a perfect match, it took 11 years for us to finally go from “just friends” to “couple”. James is originally from Tokyo and moved back for five years to go to art school. We always kept in touch, though, and it didn’t take too long after he moved back to the States for us to finally get together. The wait was worth it. We wanted our wedding to be a relaxed, warm, personal affair. We really wanted it to reflect our personalities and feel like a big party. We found the venue first and let the style go from there. We chose Los Angeles because we both love the city (I’m a born and raised Angeleno) and for a while we lived not far from the venue.
Things really came together after James designed the invitations. I have a pretty crafty family and spent a few days with some great ladies making the decorations. My mother had a giant basket of vintage lace she inherited from my late great aunt, and the pieces became a unifying design element. Our invites and the sign in board were inspired by our habit of leaving little drawings and notes on post-its for each other. Anyone who has been to our place has seen them randomly stuck all over the place. We didn’t have a bridal party, but we asked my brother to walk our dog down the aisle and stand up there for us. The photo booth was something we really wanted as well, we knew that we would get some great shots of friends and family, and it added a bit of fun to the reception.
My advice for brides is to start small and let the inspiration go from there. Pick a fabric or one design element you really want to incorporate and things will blossom. Ask for help! People like to help and often have great ideas. I thought I could manage the whole thing but no one can. We didn’t get an event planner, but we did have someone coordinating the day, which was a tremendous help. You really won’t have time to oversee it all on the day of. Take time to pick the right venue, finding somewhere you really love makes all the difference. Pick a photographer whose work you love, too. The big day is such a blur that you won’t have time to really appreciate all the little details you worked so hard on, and seeing wonderful pictures after the fact feels amazing! Above all else, stay true to yourself and your idea of the perfect day. You will feel overwhelmed and stressed and worried but just remember that nothing that can go wrong can ruin the most important part, you are in love and getting married to someone who loves you! OH – and have fun!
Wedding Vendors (Los Angeles, California):
Wedding Venue: Huron Substation / Site Management: TACT Event Management / Valet: Jeffrey Valet / Rental: Party Unlimited / Photo Booth: Magnolia Photo Booth Co. / Caterer: Gus’s Barbecue / Vegetarian Catering: Auntie Em’s Kitchen / Bride’s Dress and Hat: Made by Mother of the Bride / Groom’s Suit: Thick as Thieves / Wedding Photographer: Fresh In Love Photography / Officiant: LA Wedding Woman / Vintage vases: eBay / Fabrics: Warm Biscuit Bedding Company / Invites: Designed by groom, printed at Indie Printing / Flowers: Purchased at L.A. Flower Mart, arranged by Aunt of Bride / Wedding Favors: Botanical Paperworks / Wedding dress: vintage / Makeup: Jayme Kavanaugh
Whenever a bride is willing to share extra little details with us about her day, we get a great thrill. How else would we have known that every song performed in this ceremony was a Beatles classic, or that the bride chose blue hydrangeas because they were a favorite of her grandmother? We hope you enjoy these images from Michael Smith of Ash Imagery as much as we do — and be sure to check out the rest of the images in the gallery!
From the bride, Carly: Our first date was in a canoe at a cabin we have gone to every summer since. Since we weren’t able to have the wedding at the cabin (the park ranger was not thrilled with the idea), we wanted to create an environment that would remind us of it.
Our color scheme was based on flowers that are significant to us: orange roses because they’re rick’s favorite flower to give me, and blue hydrangea because they were my grandmother’s favorite. Our vision was based on a rustic, vintage, and handmade theme. My mother helped me create a lot of the decor and it was wonderful to spend that time with her.
For the centerpieces, we hand sewed bird ornaments using one of my grandmother’s patterns. Then our florist, Michael Bruce, created an incredible arrangement of flowers, feathers, cattails and branches to hang the ornaments from.
We created orange, white and peach paper pom poms to hang around the dance floor (which also served as the ceremony space). My mom also made vintage hanky garlands that hung from the staircases. A few of the handmade details were provided by Etsy shops (ie, place cards, table numbers & holders, cake topper, our wedding bands, and the groomsmen ties).
Ash Imagery as much as we do — and be sure to check out the rest of the images in the View more images from this wedding
Groom’s procession: “Oh! Darling” by the Beatles
Bridesmaids’ procession: “Here Comes the Sun” by the Beatles
Bride’s procession: “Something” by the Beatles
Recessional: “When I’m 64” by the Beatles
First dance: “Beauty” by the Shivers
Father/daughter dance: “Always” by Frank Sinatra
Mother/son dance: “In My Life” by Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young
Wedding Vendors (Philadelphia, PA):
Ceremony and reception venue: Knowlton Mansion / Wedding photographer: Michael Smith of Ash Imagery / Wedding planner: Jennifer French of Daydream Events / Wedding flowers: Michael Bruce Florist / Wedding dress: Monique Lhuillier Bliss / Reception dress: Betsey Johnson / Wedding shoes: TopShop / Bracelet: Bride’s grandmother / Earrings: Coach / Necklace: Prada / Hair Stylist: Kristie Miller-Wright of Scruples / Makeup: Laura Stewart of Techniques Salon and Spa / Bridesmaids’ dresses: Aria / Groom’s suit: Hugo Boss / Groom’s shirt: J. Crew / Groomsmen’s ties: Tux and Tulle / Bridesman’s tie: ToyBreaker / Wedding music: No Macarena and Peter Smyser / Wedding catering: Conroy Catering / Wedding invitations: designed by groom