“While other couples avoided using the mill for wedding day festivities, Andrew and I saw incredible potential in the site and jumped at the opportunity to offer our guests a one-of-a-kind ceremony experience.” This is exactly the kind of outlook we love to see from our couples, and Caitlin and Andrew’s day ended up being a truly one-of-a-kind day because of it. Jaquilyn Shumate Photography, Cloud 9 Events, and Botany101 Floral helping bring their perfect day of festivities to life, with some serious celebration to follow!
From the bride, Caitlin: Andrew and I wanted a wedding that celebrated our two families’ unique histories as fourth generation San Juan Islanders (the bride’s family) and long-time Texans and Austinites (the groom’s family), while reflecting our deep love of the Pacific Northwest’s natural beauty. It took just one visit for us to fall in love with Turtlehead Farm on Orcas Island. The farm’s original homestead was built by Swedish settlers in 1860 and is home to the San Juan’s Island only active single blade sawmill. While other couples avoided using the mill for wedding day festivities, Andrew and I saw incredible potential in the site and jumped at the opportunity to offer our guests a one-of-a-kind ceremony experience.
Officiated by my oldest cousin, our ceremony was following by cocktails in a small clearing between the farm’s sod-roofed blacksmith shop and flower garden. Under hand-cut papel picado banners, guests enjoyed croquet and cocktails and soaked in the farm’s stunning pastoral views. I wore a dress by Winifred Bean purchased from Seattle’s Dress Theory and Andrew wore a Brooks Brother’s suit and cowboy boots gifted by his father especially for the wedding.
Our reception was located in the farm’s original wooden barn and was chalked full of personal details that meant the world to us. In the months leading up to our wedding, I collected vintage postcards from places around the world that hold significance for our families (this included Austin, Seattle, Philadelphia, Ninilchik, New London, Walla Walla, and Halong Bay among other places). The postcards served as table-markers, and I wore an antique silk shawl from my family’s years spent in Malaysia during the 1800’s to commemorate my great-grandmother. As gifts, guests were given custom handmade cedar sachets from the sawmill, and one of our dearest friend’s bands played music late into the night.