Dreamy Winter Wedding Among the Florida Willow Trees
A winter wedding in southern temperatures is really the best of both worlds: you get to use all the warm and cozy elements we love about winter, but with perfect weather! Today’s bride and groom absolutely love everything Christmas and wanted to incorporate some of the holiday elements in their wedding day. Evergreen garlands, brass candlesticks, and a hot cocoa bar came together to create this dreamy winter wedding among the Florida willow trees.
Molliner Photography captures the pure joy of this couple on their wedding day and that of their family and friends. See, this wedding was a full-on family effort, with many relatives pitching in to hand make the farm tables and source wooden chairs and accessories. We love that everyone got involved!
From the Photographer, Molliner Photography: Very early in the planning process, this bride and groom decided that they wanted to be intentional about including their families every step of the way. The couple really loved the idea of a long family style farmhouse tables for their reception dinner. They felt like these tables fit the desired aesthetics of their wedding day and would foster the environment of family dinners around the table for their guests, so for months leading up to the wedding day their family members, bridal party members and close friends of the couple gathered together on Saturday afternoons to build these farmhouse tables. They labored together over building the tables and then ended each evening by sharing a potluck meal together. The couple also spent months hosted thrifting & yard sale parties. Anyone attending these parties would meet on Saturday mornings at the brides’ home. Then the group would disburse to find yard sales & thrift stores all over town to purchase mismatched wooden chairs & gold candlesticks. The couple even built the geometric backdrop that they stood in front of as they promised each other their forever. This speaks for the couple and their history since they grew up together as their families were so close in each other’s lives. Their history was the product of the families coming together in community and so was their wedding day.
The wedding day was FULL of joy, pretty details, and personal details. The couple provided blankets for each guest so they would stay warm during the day’s festivities. Guests sipped hot chocolate & coffee out of mugs that belonged to the bride and her sisters. Everyone shared a meal together under market lights, eating on the farmhouse tables that the families made by hand, sitting on the chairs that they found at local yard sales. The couple shared their first dance on a bunch of family rugs, one of which even belonged to me! For their toast, the guests toasted Welch’s grape juice in honor of the newlyweds, Mr. & Mrs. Welch. The bride even wore the same mink that her deceased grandmothers wore on her wedding day. Every single detail was put together by the hands that love this couple the most….dearest family members and friends.
From the Bride: From the very beginning, we knew we wanted to have an evening wedding outdoors. David and I both love the outdoors and there’s just something so romantic about spending an evening under the stars. With the help of some friends, we found our venue. When we contacted them, they had two available dates left in the year, so we booked it. Mind you, we hadn’t seen the venue yet, we only had seen pictures. A few weeks after booking we were able to visit it and it was exactly what we wanted. Positioned right in the heart of the Ocala National Forest, we were surrounded by nature, beautiful tree dripping with Spanish moss and a sparkling lake. It couldn’t have been more perfect for us!
We love everything Christmas, so we knew that we wanted to incorporate touches of the things we love about the Christmas Holiday. Hot chocolate, time by the fire, yummy smelling Christmas greenery and being surrounded by our loved ones.
One of my favorite details from our wedding was our geometric backdrop. David and I built it together along with the reception farmhouse tables. Many hours, lots of sweat and a whole bunch of patience went into constructing these pieces. We had such a blast working together on these projects and learned a lot about one another. This made it all the hard work sweeter when we sat at the tables and stood in front of the backdrop and whispered our “I do’s.”
My first favorite moment of the day was in the car on the way to the venue, I was with my two best gals, my sisters. We spent the forty-five-minute car ride praying together. We prayed for a peaceful day and giving thanks to the Lord for all He had done. It was such a precious car ride, and I am so grateful we were able to have that alone time. My second favorite moment was walking back down the aisle with my honey in hand knowing that had ‘WE FINALLY DID IT!!’. I felt like we were on top of the world, my heart was filled with such giddiness and excitement for the future.
David and I snuck in a quick kiss and chat before getting ready that morning, I had a dance party with my mom and sisters, and after our first look, David and I had a few minutes to ourselves to scoped out how everything turned out. And it was perfect. We didn’t purposefully plan to have these moments but thankfully we got them and they’re some of my favorites.
Getting to share life together is the best part of being married. If I could spend every waking moment with him I would in a heartbeat, ditching every single responsibility.
Photography: Molliner Photography
Catering: Cilantro Tacos
Dress: Stella York
Bridal Boutique: The White Closet Bridal
Veil: Toni Federici
Hair + Makeup: Carly Sims
Suit: The Men’s Wearhouse
Donuts: Daylight Donuts
Venue: Doe Lake Campground Ocala National Forest