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I love when I receive the love story from the groom. It doesn’t happen very often, but when I do, there is something so moving about their words, different than when a bride shares them. And, it’s not because the bride’s words aren’t special – because believe me, they absolutely are. It’s just that groom’s have a unique way of reliving their wedding days. They often tend to be the strong, silent type that when they share a story, it is rooted in an emotion not often shared. When I read what Patrick shared about how he and Ashley met, it had me thinking about what my own husband would say if he were asked to share. Oh, to be a fly on the wall in that conversation!

Lindsey Pantaleo

From the Groom:
Our love story is a simple and blissfully happy one. We met through a mutual acquaintance and immediately hit it off. We’ve often joked that our first date was not merely the best first date that either of us had ever had, but the best first date in the history of first dates! We went out for a romantic dinner and a movie at my place, and spent most of the night sharing our thoughts on what we wanted out of life and out of a relationship (We also shared a veritable litany of hilarious jokes). It was the first time that either of us ever talked to another person who completely understood and loved everything we had to say. When the second date, by some miracle, turned out to be even better than the first, both of us knew we were going to be together for the rest of our lives.

We knew we were a duprass, a couple whose lives and identities are inextricably woven together and who live completely for one another. The deepest foundations of our love revolve around trust, forgiveness, and support. Though we both firmly believe in practicality and compromise in a relationship and completely shun the idea of unrealistic “fairy-tale” love, we strive every day to be unwavering champions for one another. We try to acknowledge, accept, and forgive faults within ourselves and one another, even laughing about them when the time is right, while always keeping the focus on celebrating one another’s gifts and personalities. It is our life’s mission together to always keep talking and making time for each other, thanking God for each other, forgiving one another, and learning about and from each other, letting the source of our romance come from the depth of our personal connection. We are determined to prove to this world that happy, life-long marriages are still possible, and we hope that our marriage can tell a story more romantic, more passionate, and more inspiring than any fairy tale has ever told.

Ceremony Venue: Christ Episcopal Church | Reception Venue: Oak Meadow Country Club | Floral Designer: Beehive Florist & Gifts | Cake Designer: Kathy Manion | Photography: Lindsey Pantaleo

The beauty in every city is the ability to find a location completely unexpected. The ever-changing backdrop is what gives a town character. And, it makes finding a location for engagement photos a fun experience. These photos of Troy and Mallory were taken in a few different spots around one St. Louis suburb. You’d have no idea by the looks of it that these places were just a few blocks from each other. The fun lies in sneaking around corners and having a great time with every click of the shutter.

Cheryl M Photography

Amber’s choice of bold blues and purples give her classic wedding a modern touch. Plus the simple flowers and feathers create the perfect balance of decor. It’s great to see when a bride’s vision of elegance and simplicity come to life, because sometimes it’s what’s not on the table that makes the difference (sort of like that rule take a look in the mirror and remove one accessory, and you’re good to go!).

Jaclyn Marie Photography

From the Bride:
Starting early morning, I and my bridal party arrived at the church eager to start the exciting day. While getting our hair and makeup done, we turned on some music and hung out in our monogrammed robes; a gift to them from me. We ate lunch, catered in sandwiches, in between turns sitting in the hair and makeup chairs. Once we were all done “primping”, we gathered for a champagne toast to wish us all luck and what the day had ahead.

We headed outside to take group pictures, just the me and my bridesmaids to start, followed by the my family. Meanwhile, Thomas and his guys gathered in the basement of the church. As they were all dressing, the photographer snuck around to get as many candid pictures as possible. Once dressed, the guys headed out for pictures. Once they wrapped up their groom shots, the downtime mean lots of goofing around and even a couple rounds of Trivial Pursuit.

After all the separate wedding photos are taken, Thomas stood alone, facing the chapel and awaited my arrival for our first look. All he could hear was the clicking of my heels inching closer to him as I approached him from behind. We both had huge smiles, knowing that this moment is easing both of our nerves and all we can think about is how happy we are. We shared this special moment together as our photographer captured a few moments to freeze in time.

At the ceremony, the feeling of love and romance came alive with live music playing thanks to the musician who was a friend of mine and Thomas’. The music continued as the wedding party procession starts and the ceremony begins. The live band performed “Marry Me” after our vows were exchanged. As the ceremony wrapped up, the planted a big kiss and the hard part was over – it was time for our reception!

I had worked on our wedding book long enough, so I was very eager to see all of my hard work and planning come to life. Moving toasts from the Maid of Honor, Best Man and Father of the Bride reminded our guests that love is priceless and it was the reason we were all there. Guests of all ages were dancing, laughing and crying together. It was the perfect way to finish up our beautiful day!

Ceremony Venue: University Congregational Church | Reception Venue: The Wichita Boathouse | Photography: Jaclyn Marie Photography | Florist: Stems Floral | Baker: Cheri’s Bakery | Catering: Blue Moon Caterers | DJ: Northern Lights and Sounds | Wedding Gown: San Patrick from Ida’s Bridal | Bridesmaids Dresses: Ida’s Bridal

Clean lines, crisp colors, and rustic elements make this styled shoot the perfect balance of details to create a classic look. From the ice blue linens to the birds nests on the place settings, it’s sweet and pretty. Sharon Ivy does a fabulous job of presenting several table decor options to help demonstrate that different looks for a few tables is completely feasible. Sometimes it’s as simple as a switch from a high centerpiece to a low, or a more complicated one to a simple one. Don’t be afraid to mix it up – it helps add depth and variety to a room.

Darbi G. Photography

From the Photographer, Darbi:
This stylized shoot in Kansas City plays out a vision of a soft, earthy and rustic affair that doesn’t succumb to the expected Midwest autumn color palette of red, orange and yellow accented with pumpkins, gourds and leaves. Sharon Ivy’s inspiration began with branches and twigs played up with white, green, shades of blue kissed with some sparkle. The goal was to end up with details and a mood that brides of all budgets could implement in a way that is simple and approachable, yet elegant. We transformed a basic loft space in downtown KC with guest tables featuring chivari chairs, white flowers including roses, ranunculus and hydrangea, and accents of woven chargers, branch balls, delicate bird nests, succulents in mercury glass vases, candles and place cards perched in tiny branches. The sweetheart table stood out with a smoky-blue silk linen, a “love prop” ampersand, and bundles of jewels amidst succulents and bird nests. The bride’s bouquet was a cluster of flowers, succulents and berries wrapped in burlap and finished with a stunning rhinestone brooch that complimented her gown’s brooch. The ivory square-tiered cake was a stage for gilded leaves of bronze, gold, silver and copper; the cake was accompanied by a burlap table-topper and mercury glass votives. Overall, the twist on a fall wedding succeeded in exuding an earthy, rustic, yet very elegant charm.

Photography: Darbi G. Photography | Event Planner: Sharon Ivy Events | Floral Designer: Beco Flowers | Venue: The Berg Event Space | Stationery: Salutations by Mairead | Dress Store: Altar Bridal | Cake Designer: Rebekah – Cake Artist | Makeup Artist: Jolie Artistry | Hair Stylist: Last Tangle Salon

Bold and bright colors are just too much fun for me. And, it’s easy to play with their balance to create a different affect, including using them in subtle ways for a minimalistic look. Or, adding pops of color everywhere to make a statement. And, surf blue, apple, hot pink and white are the perfect Spring and Summer palette. Although, I challenge any couple to give a palette like this a try in Fall or Winter – now that would be a statement!

row 1: Kay English Photography via SMP; J.Crew; Katie Stoops Photography / Flower Girls via SMP; Nicole Welch Photography via SMP
row 2: Cut and Paste via Oh So Beautiful Paper; Amanda Rae Photography via SMP; Thompson Photography Group via Every Last Detail
row 3: Charlotte Geary Photography; Amelia Johnson Photography via SMP; Angie Silvy Photography via SMP; SOTA via SMP

A wedding with character, and throwing tradition to the wind to focus on what’s most personal. Tina and Ryan’s wedding is full of so much fun – bold colors, their love of Star Wars, art and family. I loved seeing how the two of them sprinkled so much of themselves into the wedding – all the way down to their infectious smiles. Plus, a wedding with a little ink and a Stormtrooper? Sign me up!

I had so much fun piecing together this post. So much so – in fact – that I couldn’t narrow down the photos. So, be prepared for a photo-heavy post!

One Tree Photo + Cinema

From the Bride:
Most of our wedding planning was pulled off with the help of friends and family, making it all the more special. We enjoyed featuring our friends talents throughout the day. Our DJ and cupcakes were both provided by long-time friends. I also tried to stay away from corporate purchases, and stick with helping support local business and DIY artists on Etsy. We wanted the whole day to be completely us, which was why we incorporated our love of Star Wars throughout the day. The first touch was in the ceremony with dainty little hints like our Officiant “reading” from a Star Wars book and exiting the chapel under light-sabers. Then the storm trooper and Darth Vader appearance following the ceremony was a surprise wedding gift to my husband. Months later, our friends still say it was the highlight of the day. Everyone loved them, especially my 2-year old daughter who has since proclaimed that she is married to the Dark Lord of the Sith. Being an artist myself, I wanted our reception location to be vibrant and full of character. We found the perfect the location in a modern youth art center. We loved that the entire cost of our reception was an investment back into the program to help the high-needs and under-served youth, who they support (read more about their services on the VanGo website). I couldn’t have imagined a better wedding, and I am so glad we have such incredible photos that truly captured our day!

Ceremony Venue: Danforth Chapel | Reception Venue: VanGo Mobile Arts | Catering: Hy-Vee | Photography and Cinema Film: One Tree Photo + Cinema | Floral: Jill Boyle, The Flower Lady | DJ: Chad McElwain aka DJ Oz | Cake: Atomic Cupcakes | Cake Topper:   | Banner: Liddabits | Wedding Day Program: Tina Elder | Storm Trooper: Aaron Knutson, The Kansas City Stormtrooper | Wedding Gown:  Ida’s Bridal | Bridesmaid Dresses: Ida’s Bridal | Alterations and Tuxes: Alterations & Custom Sewing

You get the best of both worlds with today’s engagement session. A little bit country and a little bit city. The perfect balance for this outdoorsy and urban couple.

Cadence Cornelius Photography

From the Bride-to-be:
We must really like the letter C. For our engagement session with Cadence Cornelius, we envisioned “Cozy, Casual, and City Cool. Those two categories describe who we are. Aaron’s undergrad is in forestry so we love the outdoors or “playing outside” as we like to call it. Fall is the best because you can wear cozy sweaters and flannels. We’re also city people, passionate about food and wine When we’re not cooking at home, we’re always out and about looking for the latest and greatest restaurant. Our wedding is September 1 at the Round Barn Farm in Red Wing, Minnesota. A mini destination location for our family and friends visiting Minnesota for the long weekend, the hope is that “our day” actually turns out to be a truly memorable experience for everyone else. The overall vibe of the wedding is “vintage romantic,” with unique personal touches incorporated into everything. The ceremony will be held on the front lawn of the Bed & Breakfast under a large tree and will feature handpicked antiques, an abundance of flowers, and a unique display of apparel by the bridal party. Cocktail hour will feature a blue grass band, lawn games, appetizers and signature drinks. For the reception, the barn will filled with white lights and long tables where guests will eat family style supplied by our caterer who uses all locally grown Minnesota ingredients. Dessert will be handmade by the groom’s mother. We’re looking forward to an unforgettable night of friends, family, good food, and dancing.

As some of you know, I have been on the hunt for an intern or two as a way to one, have some support around the Landlocked world, and two, give someone the opportunity to learn and grow within this industry.  It has been quite the process – and I had so many wonderful individuals express their desire to help Landlocked Bride grow even more.  It’s been a blessing, really.

Well, I am proud to officially introduce you to the two (yes, two) new Landlocked Bride Editorial Interns.  In the coming weeks, you will see posts and content being shared by them both, in addition to my posts – only help to diversify the voice on the blog and bring great new content.  Please join me in welcoming both Natalie and Lindsay!

I was born and raised a Midwestern girl who moved to Texas for college, but never forgot my roots. I have worked in the wedding industry my entire professional career, and have recently become a certified Wedding Consultant through Nuptial Essentials Curriculum and Instruction. I started out blogging for Chez Wedd, a local wedding blog in Austin, TX, and interning for one of the city’s best wedding coordinators, Barbara Hearne of Barbara’s Brides. And, because I wanted to put my BA in Spanish to good use, and I headed to Costa Rica for six months to learn the ropes of destination wedding planning with Weddings Costa Rica. I am currently back in Austin, where I am a member of the NEAWP, working for Barbara’s Brides, and excited to be blogging for Landlocked Bride!

As a Midwest girl currently living in the South… fish and chips have turned into shrimp and grits, 3 of my 5 radio pre-sets are set to Country and my current Midwest wardrobe has only been useful 1 month of the year. However, the things that haven’t changed are my love for cheese, the Packers, the Midwest and weddings.

After getting married last July, in my hometown of Green Bay, WI, I realized how much I truly loved the process of wedding planning and the enjoyment of searching unique and creative ways to add a personalized touch to such a special day. This passion has led me to start my own ETSY store and find a job at a local bridal boutique. I am so excited about this opportunity and helping share all the beautiful weddings the Midwest and Mountain West have to offer!

A fun, sparkly platform pump. Perfect for any season.

Katie Day Photo

The joy in Catherine and Eric’s wedding photos was ever apparent. From their first look to their stop at Left Bank Books. Their simple and uncomplicated details, and big smiles. I loved how Catherine took an easy approach to her planning – staying true to her personality and just running with whatever was thrown her way.

The Rasers Photography

From the Bride:
Since I never fell into the dreaming-of-my-wedding-day-since-I-was-five category but rather squarely into the what?-I’m-getting-married?-Oh-dear-heavens-I-have-to-plan-this-wedding-thing-now-don’t-I camp, I had absolutely no idea where to begin. All I knew was that I wanted an autumn wedding, and we wanted something simple but classy, relaxed yet elegant, and not terribly large but not terribly exclusive.

Finding a dress was pretty easy – I just hopped online and looked for a simple white dress. (Being one to avoid the limelight whenever possible, I knew the bridal boutiques were not for me.) I found the bridesmaid dresses in the same way – although many places don’t release their ‘fall’ colors until late summer which was frustrating, and is something to keep in mind. The groom & groomsmen just wore grey suits (tuxes were not very ‘us’), and we somehow forgot to coordinate tie-color – I’d recommend not assuming the groom will take care of that lest one of your groomsmen end up wearing a bright pink tie out of nowhere (but it worked, somehow). The venue we chose was all inclusive – in-house catering, tables, linens, chairs, dishes, glassware – so there wasn’t much to fuss about there, which was perfect for us, being non-planners.

Pinterest was extremely useful in gathering images and color palettes and other ideas for the wedding. To add personal touches, my now sister-in-law suggested a bookish theme (I’m a bit of a book-nerd and the groom reads quite a bit as well), and since her partner-in-crime works at a library, we were able to get a hold of loads of old, discarded books to stack use as centerpieces. We also made ‘poofs’ from pages of an old dictionary to complement the books (and our one activity at the shower was to invite the guests to help make them). I found some adorable little wedding favors on Etsy – tiny little flower pots with seeds in little autumn leaves. We did the music ourselves – in that we created a playlist and bought any songs we wanted but didn’t have. Again, sister-in-law and her partner-in-crime were crucial to pulling that off as well, as they manned the computer.

Everything went pretty smoothly in the end – it was a great day and a great wedding. I only wish we could have danced more (or at all, really)! All that planning, and it seems to go by in seconds.

Ceremony / Reception Venue: | Cake: McArthur’s Bakery | Florist: Lesher’s Flowers | Photographer: The Rasers Photography | Wedding Gown: BCBG | Bride’s Shoes: Calvin Klein | Bride’s Necklace: Banana Republic | Bridesmaids Dresses: J.Crew | Groom’s Suit: Brooks Brothers | Groomsmen Suits: Brooks Brothers, Banana Republic