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landlocked bride® | midwest + mountain west wedding inspiration

plan a modern wedding in the middle of the country

I adore big balloons. Whether it may be used as a prop in your engagement or wedding photos, with your groom or with your bridal party or as the perfect backdrop or focal point for your ceremony or reception venue, there is something so magical about the big, bright (or pastel) balloons. My favorite touch is the added tassels to the string of the balloon making them that much more fun. Here are a few of my favorite uses of these pretty, big balloons.

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Elizabeth Messina via Style Me Pretty

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Christian Cruz via Green Wedding Shoes

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Rachel Parker of MHP via Southern Weddings

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Shipra Panosian Photography via Elizabeeth Anne Designs

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Rachwal Photography via Style Me Pretty

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Jaylena Photography via Ruffled Blog

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Oli Sansom via Style Me Pretty

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Nathan Russell Photography via Ruffled Blog

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Cotton Candy Photography via Love My Dress

 

Christa and Nick chose their hometown of Cape Girardeau in Southeast Missouri as the perfect spot to become husband and wife and celebrate the day with family and friends. Both Christa and Nick are from Southeast Missouri, were engaged in Cape Girardeau, and although their current home is St. Louis, MO, they both thought that their childhood home in the Bootheel of Missouri was the perfect fit for the two of them.

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About the Big Day:
Christa and Nick had a beautiful, southern style wedding, and it was filled with details that truly made the day meaningful. From the getaway car that was once her father’s mother’s car which Christa’s father fully restored, to the doors of Christa’s great grandparents’ house as a backdrop to the cake, to the barn doors from a close family friend’s barn used as the backdrop to the head table, there were so many truly personal touches in this wedding day, making it beyond memorable for more than just the couple. The wedding gowns of the mothers of both the bride and groom were displayed next to their own wedding photos.

Christa added a twist to the traditional something old, new, borrowed and blue, and instead of using objects to display these things, she used friends. Her Something Old was a high school friend, Something New was a coworker and best friend, Something Borrowed was a newly married friend and Something Blue was Nick’s cousin, as something blue symbolized family and continuity.

In between the ceremony and the reception, the couple, who now calls St. Louis home, had to make a stop at a favorite local college bar to watch the end of the St. Louis Cardinals baseball game because in October, true Cardinals fans can’t miss even the tiniest bit of the playoff madness.

Christa and Nick have a very real love for one another, and a true love and appreciation for family and friendship, all of which were displayed on their wedding day.


Photographer: Simply Stated Photography / Ceremony Venue: St. Mary's Cathedral / Reception Venue: Drury Lodge / Flowers & Decor: J Maries / Cake Baker: Kim Goodpasture / DJ: Charlie's Review / Wedding Planner/Coordinator: Theresa Kern / Videographer: Claire Bira

Paige and Daniel had the perfect fall wedding day in Southern Illinois in late October. In the eyes of the bride, she had blinked and grown up from a little girl to a bride, there to experience her fairytale wedding day with her father, her family and most importantly, her groom by her side. Cheers to Paige and Daniel, and in the meantime, here’s a peek at some of the gorgeous details from their wedding day!

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About the Big Day:
Paige and Daniel were married on October 19, 2013 at Orchardview Winery in Alma, Illinois. Their vintage chic wedding day was filled with creative personal touches perfectly suited for the bride and groom. Paige was a DIY bride who had the help of all of her bridesmaids, family and friends to make her dreams a reality when it came to the overall wedding décor. She had the help of these important people to assemble centerpieces and other decorations for the venue, and her dad and grandpa helped to build a lot of key pieces as well, including the freestanding doorway that lead the guests, and the bride, into the ceremony location and down the aisle to her prince charming. Paige’s favorite detail of the entire day was the arbor built out of old barn wood that stood behind the preacher during the wedding ceremony. Three strips of material hung from the arbor, and Paige and Daniel, along with their families, braided the strips together during the ceremony to represent their unity. Pins from Paige and Daniel’s college fraternity and sorority were carefully pinned to Paige’s bouquet.

During the reception, their wedding guests enjoyed a BBQ dinner followed by a night of fun and dancing. Paige and Daniel’s wedding day was a true representation of their relationship and their futures that they were soon to grow and build together. The two of them left for their honeymoon in Jamaica shortly after their wedding day, then came home and packed to head to their new home in England, where Daniel is stationed. The new Mr. and Mrs. have started their new journey together filled with love and adventure.


Ceremony Venue: Orchardview Winery / Reception Venue: Orchardview Winery / Photographer: SHD Photography / Catering: Wheelan's BBQ Shack / Cake Baker: Covered in Chocolate / Rentals: Kelly's for the Occasion / DJ: Dwonka and Funke

This wedding is breathtaking for so many reasons – the details, the dress, the DIY, and especially the love you can see between this beautiful couple, and the friends and family surrounding them on their special day. Studio 29 captured so many beautiful images of this wedding; photos that every bride only dreams of having to reflect back on from their wedding day. I always love having the opportunity to feature a Wisconsin wedding, and this is definitely not one to miss. studio29_photography_0968 studio29_photography_0969 studio29_photography_0971 studio29_photography_0970 studio29_photography_0972 studio29_photography_0973 Slide1 studio29_photography_1012 studio29_photography_0977 studio29_photography_0980 studio29_photography_0981 studio29_photography_0979 studio29_photography_0982 studio29_photography_0991 studio29_photography_0985 studio29_photography_0986 studio29_photography_0996 studio29_photography_0995 Slide7 studio29_photography_1002 studio29_photography_0998 studio29_photography_0997 Slide3 studio29_photography_1008 Slide4 studio29_photography_1009 studio29_photography_1010 studio29_photography_0988 studio29_photography_0993 studio29_photography_0994 studio29_photography_0992 studio29_photography_0974 studio29_photography_0975 studio29_photography_1023 studio29_photography_1014 studio29_photography_1017 studio29_photography_1016 studio29_photography_1018 studio29_photography_1019 studio29_photography_1021 studio29_photography_1020 studio29_photography_1026 studio29_photography_1024 studio29_photography_1028 studio29_photography_1031 studio29_photography_1029 studio29_photography_1030 studio29_photography_1022 studio29_photography_1032 studio29_photography_1036 Slide06 Slide07 studio29_photography_1042 studio29_photography_1038 Slide08 studio29_photography_1045 studio29_photography_1046 studio29_photography_1050 Slide09 studio29_photography_1051 Slide10 studio29_photography_1054 studio29_photography_1058 studio29_photography_1057 studio29_photography_1063 studio29_photography_1061 studio29_photography_1062 studio29_photography_1060 studio29_photography_1059 studio29_photography_1067 studio29_photography_1066 studio29_photography_1068 studio29_photography_1055 studio29_photography_1065 studio29_photography_1064


From the Bride:

How Amanda & Mike met?  A mutual friend set us up after Mike saw me at the grocery store.

How Mike proposed? Mike proposed to me in Mercer, WI last summer.  My boss said we could use his cabin and fishing boat for the weekend.  Mike knows I love to fish and the cabin is located on Long Lake.   To give you some background my Grandpa Wayne and I were really close.  He passed away about 6 years ago.  I looked up to him so much and we would stay up late nights eating pickled herring (it’s a Norwegian thingJ) and just talking.  I miss him and think of him every day.   My grandpa Wayne made me a tackle box with all of his old fishing lures and made a label on the tackle box with my name on it.   Unfortunately, Mike did not get to meet my grandpa, but I tell him stories about my grandpa all the time.  Mike and I went fishing that day in the very early morning.  We were casting and not getting any bites.  Mike usually sets up my pole for me with one of his lures.  After a while, Mike suggested I try one of my grandpa’s lures for good luck.  I was showing Mike the different lures my grandpa put in there to get his take on which one was good.  He told me to just pick a good old one so I did.  I gave it to Mike to put on my pole and he tied the ring on the lure.  He got down on one knee, handed it to me, and asked me to marry him.   I was very surprised and of course, I said yes!!

Favorite part of the day?  My favorite part of the day was the emotion in Mike’s face when I walked down the aisle.  All my nervousness went away when I saw him.  Second part was my Dad and my sister singing our first song.

Hardest part of planning?  Prioritizing what needs  to be done first.  Then, the little things you forget about closer to the date.

Advice for future brides?  The day will go by so fast to try to take a step back during every moment and look around and take it in.

Why you chose the venue you did?  It was such a beautiful, peaceful place.  It had so much opportunity to show your sense of style.  It was also more of a relaxing place, and we could camp there afterwards.

//Other Details//

All decorations made by Kelly Fjerstad (Mother of the Bride) Table Runners; Burlap with Lace edges, Mason jars were filled with baby’s breath flowers, Gift Table: 2 Whiskey Barrels & old wooden door, painted wooden frames with names of wedding party on the glass, guest sign in bench, invitation framed in window. 

 

Photographer: Studio 29 / Bride’s Dress: Lazaro / Bride’s Shoes: DSW / Bridesmaid Dresses: Bill Levkoff / Hairstylist: Hair and Body Solutions / Reception Venue: Wern Valley / Cake Baker: Sweet Selections / Band: David Marshall Band / Flowers: Sentry Foods

Maria and Walter had a beautiful wedding, filled with love and emotion and a killer pair of purple heels. I love that the photographer captured such memorable moments such as the first look and exchanging of notes before the ceremony. I also love how there is a mix of purple hues within the decor, not just one specific purple that they stuck to. The lavender flowers in her bouquet are so beautiful, it’s rare to see this color bunched together and they looked stunning against her ivory gown. The night ended with lots of dancing and a photo booth to document all of the events, and memories with their loved ones who were there to help share in this special day.
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This wedding is full of so much joy! You see pure joy and anticipation when the brides are getting ready for their first look. The overwhelming joy and excitement when they turn around to first see each other. The emotional joy and pride you feel while they are walking towards each other down the asile. The joy and happiness they share with their bridal party. The deep joy and love they share during their first dance, and stunning, intimate pre-wedding photos together. This wedding just wants me to scream Oh Happy Day – cause that’s exactly what it was.

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From the Bride – Monique

How we met: Amber and I went to the same high school for a couple of months, when Amber was a junior and I was a sophomore. We only had a few friends in common, and knew of each other, but we weren’t friends at that time. A couple of years after graduation, I hosted a birthday party for a friend of ours and a mutual friend of ours asked if she could bring Amber as a guest. Having remembered her from high school, I said yes and she came out to celebrate with us. We hit it off immediately and we have been inseparable since that day, May 29, 2005.

Our Engagement: A few months after we celebrated our 3rd anniversary together, Amber told me that she wanted to spend a special weekend in Salt Lake City together. I was excited because this is something that we enjoy doing, but never seem to get enough of. When we got to Salt Lake City, Amber handed me an envelope with a clue directing me to the Farmer’s Market, which is one of our favorite places to go in SLC. After we spent some time there, she gave me several more clues directing me to different dog parks around town. I also got clues to my favorite store, our favorite restaurant, and this funky dog-friendly hotel downtown. We spent the entire day in this clue scavenger hunt, visiting our favorite places and spending time with our dogs. When we got to the Hotel Monaco there was a giant sign welcoming our 2 dogs, Joey and Bella.  It was pretty special. After dessert and an in-room massage, Amber surprised me with the sweetest moment of my life when she asked me to marry her. A couple of weeks later, I chose a ring for her and started planning a proposal on a trip we were planning later in the month to the Mexican Riviera. A few days before we left for our cruise, I was so excited that I couldn’t sleep. I absolutely couldn’t stand it anymore so I woke her up really early in the morning and asked her to marry me too.


I really appreciate a well done wedding theme, and it’s even better when a couple really puts their lives and personalities into a theme, making it uniquely theirs. Stephanie and Cory did just that, incorporating a subtle travel theme without overwhelming their guests with details that weren’t really related to them. In addition to that, their unique bridal party attire really makes this wedding stand out: Two-tone dresses for the bridesmaids and earthy feeling bouquets, and bow-ties and dapper hats for the groomsmen. All of this gives the wedding a laid-back, personal feel, which is so refreshing.


From the Photographer:

Stephanie and Cory wanted to add in decor and flavors from each phase of their lives together; Colorado (where Stephanie is from), California (where they currently live) and finally Thailand (home of their favorite food). They have traveled around the world throughout their relationship and wanted to include a “travel theme” without incorporating the traditional decor and inclusions that you think of with travel themed weddings. Since Stephanie is an interior designer and Cory is a landscape architect, they were able to do this through DIY centerpieces, organic and eco-friendly decorations, plus handmade truffles from the bride.


Your family and friends are traveling near and far to be with you on your special day, so why not show your gratitude and surprise them with a bag full of goodness upon their arrival. These bags don’t have to break the bank, just keep them unique and thoughtful. Below are some tips on the necessities to include as well as additional options for making these bags memorable, not to mention the perfect introduction for whats to come on your wedding day!

BAG  The Necessities

  • Welcome letter: Something short and sweet from the bride and groom thanking guests for helping celebrate your special day.
  • Weekend Schedule/Directions: Some guests are likely to forget to bring along your invitation, so provide them with a plan B in case this happens.
  • Local Activities: If you know your guests will be staying more than one night, or there may be some down time in-between the ceremony and the reception – provide your guests with some local activities or a list of your favorite local establishments.
  • Bottled water: If you’re feeling extra crafty add your own monogramed or personalized wrap.
  • Snacks (Salty): Throw in your favorite brand of chips, pretzels, or nuts – whatever it is, your guests will be happy to have something to snack on upon their arrival.
  • Snacks (Sweet): Chocolate… because who doesn’t love chocolate?!

Slide1

 Wedding Itinerary: Simple Simon Design on ETSY| Wedding Map: Magnolia Papers on ETSY | M&Ms: Photographed by Charlotte Geary Photography

A Little Something Extra

  • Stay local: Include items that are near and dear to you and your fiance, or to the location you will be married. Getting married in Wisconsin? Throw in some of your favorite Cheese Curds! 
  • Stay Personal: Did you meet your fiance when you were in elementary school? Throw in some personalized #2 pencils. A cute poem or description of why certain unique items are included is also a great addition – or add this to your welcome note.
  • Have fun: Custom hotel door hangers (a personal favorite) or mini champagne or wine bottles are additional ways to wow your guests and let them know what exactly they are in for – a wonderful celebration for 2 of their favorite people.
  • Personalize the bag: Although paper bags are completely acceptable, take it one step further with personalized tote bags that your guests can reuse once your wedding has conclude

Slide1Tote: Wedding Chicks | Wisconsin Cheese Curds | Pencils: The Common Grade on ETSY    | Door Hanger: Lucky Girl Paper on ETSY


What fun and unique items do you plan to include in your oot bags?

I could not believe how much of this wedding was handmade by the couple and their families and friends. Everything came together so beautifully, and I loved the bride’s sentiment that regardless of the cost, it was their memories of the day that would last forever. This wedding is proof you can have everything you want, like two dresses, or “extras” like late night snacks, without compromising the budget if you’re willing to prioritize and work hard to make it happen.


From the Bride:

My high-school sweetheart and I love city life but also relish in the small town, Midwest farm lifestyle. 

From the get-go, I envisioned lots of DIY projects, a neutral palette with a hint of blue and a rustic feel. I also wanted to incorporate peacock feathers, and my in-laws just so happened to pick up two pet peacocks during our engagement.  With the help of our amazing parents, family and friends, we created, constructed, and revamped almost everything you see.  Piles of birch wood were turned into candles, vases, and an arbor. Peacock feathers + tulle flowers = perfect corsages.  Old hatch door? Well, why not turn it into a mason jar chandelier.

As an avid bargain hunter, my ceremony dress was my best find to date.  I stopped at an outlet bridal store, and they just happened to have the most gorgeous Sottero & Midgley sample dress from a few years back – and it was in my size! I just had to have a party dress too! This vintage number was custom designed by me and constructed using yes, I have to admit, a $20 dress I found on Craigslist (it had great bones!) and my grandma’s lace wedding dress, also worn by my matron of honor (my aunt) on her wedding day.

Per the hubby’s request – the bar included pickled goodies including turkey gizzards, sausages, and eggs.  True love right there. Per my request, we had a late-night feast with s’more lovin’ and popcorn bars.  Total crowd pleasers!

There is a little piece of my husband, myself and our loved ones in every detail of this small (for Nebraska standards!), intimate wedding of 130 guests. We scrimped here, splurged there, and the whole wedding came in well under $10,000.

It was worth more than all the money in the world; we will cherish the memories of this day forever.


Photographer: Selah Photography / Bride’s Dress: Sottero & Midgley / Bride’s Shoes: Ann Marino / Fashion Designer: Evan Picone / Reception Venue: Knight Museum

When I had gotten engaged, I remember my mother telling me that I should just take my old prom dress, dye it white, and wear it again for my wedding day. Back then I thought she was crazy, but now looking at the wedding of Julianna & Brandon, I realize that she was on to something. Although Julianna didn’t dye her dress, it was the same dress that she had worn to prom when Brandon, her now husband, was her date – and she couldn’t have made a better dress decision. Not only does this dress hold a special meaning from the course of their 10 year relationship, this dress looks amazing on her. This is only the start to the personalized details incorporated into this intimate winter wedding.

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Emily Crall Photography


From the Photographer

It happened around Thanksgiving. They had been renovating their new generational home (it was her grandparents’ home) and had recently moved in when Brandon proposed to Julianna. They had been together for 10 years so it was really no surprise, but it had the culmination of all things meaningful to them: being together and having the blessing of their parents.

The wedding date itself came about by their very nature. They are both very vibrant, but private people. They love being with their families and friends, but prefer to keep things low key and personal. And so, with Thanksgiving tucked away, they set their wedding date for just a few weeks later.

Brandon & Julianna kept everything just how they felt most comfortable; they had parents, siblings, and 2 best friends at the ceremony along with the judge and wed in front of the fire place in the home she grew up in.

Julianna had her prom dress from high school altered to wear for her wedding day. Ironically, her and Brandon have a photo together in front of the same fireplace from yesteryears of high school. The jeweled bouquet was made by her mom with a plethora of brooches that she has.

After they were married, they stuck pizzas in the oven (homemade pizzas that Julianna had made earlier that day) and drank to their happiness.

Everything was pulled together by the bride, her mother, and her sister-in-law. The prom-turned-wedding dress was altered by her aunt, the bouquet put together by her mom, the decor by all of them, the location at her brother’s home, and makeup done herself. It was lovely in so many ways.