As I was looking through the images for this real wedding, my internal dialogue was something like this, “oh my goodness. yes. yes. love that. oh wow. totally obsessed.” Needless to say I am in love with this wedding: the ceremony in a clearing, the loyal ring-bearer, and all the handmade details. Not to mention the back story that really makes you think about life, and spending it with those you love, and namely, the one you love most.
From the Bride:
Nick and I agree that we have a fantastic story. Nick grew up in Dallas and we are both originally from southern Ohio, but we met in Lancaster, Pennsylvania in 2005 when Nick was working on a film set, and I was a waitress and a glass artist that contributed some glass work to the set. He came in to my restaurant and asked me out only a few days before he was to go back to New York, and we had a whirlwind series of romantic dinner, road-trip, and breakfast dates in that 72 hours before he left. We dated long-distance for a couple of years until I decided to take the plunge and move to the city to be with him.
We had been working on plans for a trip to Italy, where Nick secretly wanted to propose, but one day in 2008 he suffered an aortic dissection and had to undergo emergency open-heart surgery. He was in perfect health and great shape, so it took us by total surprise, and against all odds he survived. After months of recovery, our Italy plans got pushed further into the future. Nick was determined to wait until we were in Italy to propose, and finally in October 2010 he asked me to be his wife (in Italian, no less) in Rio Maggiore while overlooking the sea.
We wanted our wedding to be an event all about celebrating life, love, family and friendship, because as we learned from Nick’s experience, you never know what can happen. It was extremely important that our guests have a smashing time, and that the details were thoughtful and a reflection of us, whether anyone noticed or not. Our ceremony was relaxed and filled with laughter and tears, and took place in my neighbor’s clearing in the woods. The officiant was our good-friend Brandon, who originally convinced Nick to ask me on our first date. Our guests sat on hay bales while my cousins and 91 year old grandfather played instruments, and the ring bearer (my sister’s Newfoundland Ferdinand) galloped down the aisle with my mother’s ring pillow pinned to his collar. Our parents each gave us words of wisdom about life and marriage, and my dad unrolling a long list of honey-do’s and telling Nick to make sure and keep the seat down and me laughing. We each wrote our own vows and ring ceremony exchanges. One of my favorite details is Nick’s ring being made of titanium (the same metal as his new heart valve) and engraved on the inside is the written sound of a heartbeat, “lub-dub, lub-dub”.
I come from a long line of hard-core DIY-ers, and we all spent months crafting for the day. I had the help of my brilliant designer friend Marissa Rivera on the invitations, while I silk-screened each one. Dick Blick and Paper Presentation probably know me by name, I was there so often getting the supplies we needed. We tried our hardest to keep things as budget and environmentally friendly as possible, so we had everyone we knew saving cardboard tubes, and I got snaps from OldeEnglishCrackers.com to make the English table crackers that were filled with toys, jokes, and handmade tissue paper hats. Each table represented a different movie that we love, and our friend made movie ticket escort cards that we stashed in the drawer of my dad’s antique cash register. We had his jukebox out and popcorn machine popping away as guests strolled into the tent in my parent’s backyard. There was an old metal bathtub filled to the brim with beer from Brooklyn, Texas, Pennsylvania and Ohio, including mead that our friends made just for the occasion. Our signature cocktail was called the “Butler County Buck,” with homemade ginger beer, basil-ginger syrup, lime and rum. Each guest was given Texas and Ohio hand-stamped goodie bags filled with peanut butter buckeyes and southern pralines, made by my mom and all her lady-friends. Our friends helped us make all the paper and wire flowers for the log centerpieces my dad cut. All live flowers were purchased in bulk or picked from the garden or woods, and assembled by aunts, bridesmaids and friends in our garage. The details that we didn’t make I acquired from Etsy, such as my hair fascinator and the little bird cake-toppers. The candle holders, jars, and props for the photo booth were borrowed from friends’ attics, or from scouring thrift stores and yard sales.
All I can say for my style is that I can’t help but love aqua, salmon and like colors, antiques, and usually the decorating theory I live by is that if you like it, it will match. We are thankful for our coordinator, Michelle Kinne of Blue Dahlia events, who saved the day. She was supportive of all our ideas, and creatively made all our plans come together seamlessly. We knew we wanted the Wiebners as our photographers since we saw their work at a friend’s wedding in 2007. They were so much fun to work with and made us feel relaxed and just like ourselves. It truly was the best day of our lives so far!