landlocked bride® | midwest + mountain west wedding inspiration

plan a modern wedding in the middle of the country



From the Photographer:

A gorgeous warm summer day in a beautiful garden created the perfect day for Amanda and Jeff’s wedding. Their wonderful wedding party and family not only made the day run smoothly, but made the day very fun.

I’ve always loved the Efroymson Wedding Garden at the Indianapolis Zoo. When I started to think about my own wedding, I quickly fell in love with the location. I decided to keep my wedding closer to home though. You could imagine my excitement when I heard Amanda and Jeff were having their wedding at the zoo. I was thrilled to be capturing it.

We stayed late in the night with a full dance floor. After the reception ended, they continued the celebration in Indy with friends and family. I love celebrations like that. Nothing says a successful night like being surrounded by friends and family.

Photographer:  Jennifer Van Elk Photography//Caterer: Centerplate//Dress Store:David’s Bridal//Hair Stylist:Flipped Out Hair Salon//Officiant:Mandy Baldwin//Invitation Designer: Minted//Floral Designer:The Farmer’s Daughter’s Market//Bridesmaid Dresses:Vestique Boutique//Event Venue: Indianapolis Zoo//

This wedding is the epitome of hand-made. The bride and groom literally built the venue (their farm!) to their specifications, and the bride is a wedding planner and florist, so everything was completely to her specifications. She gave a much more detailed and special account of the day then I could do justice to, so I’ll let the images and the bride speak for themselves!

From the Bride:

For us, everything is about being original and true to self so buying our farm 10 months before we got married was quite exciting and at times a race to the finish.  We had to do a complete face lift to the property.  New barn, new fencing, rebuild the bridge, gut the existing farmhouse, pour concrete in the barns, landscape, sow seed and lay sod…everything!  On top of that is was when the winter temperatures were at some of the lowest they’ve been and the summer was 6 weeks of temperatures between 100-110*f and humid as all get out!   Thank goodness for great friends willing to work for food!! 🙂
With all that said and all the blood, sweat and tears that went into making it ‘ours’ it also came with a cool addition…we could build this to be exactly what we wanted in a venue!!!  I grew up on a cattle & row crop farm in a small town in Missouri and Andys family owned a farm is a small town about 30 mins from me.  The farm we bought was smack dab in the middle of his family, my family and my grandparents farm.  So having a real country wedding was a must for us!  We don’t like the dazzle, divas and glitz of traditional weddings.   We wanted a party…with a wedding on the side.  We wanted all of our guest to come and be comfortable so of course we set the ‘dress code’ of jeans and casual dresses.   We love our family and friends…not what they wear.   
With me being a florist and wedding planner I couldn’t wait to get to work.   I knew exactly what would be fitting for our taste and what our guests would appreciate as well.  I handled the ‘girl’ stuff and Andy was the muscle on the farm.   I planned the wedding and did the flowers and he built the venue for the wedding.   It was a big group effort with lots of help from family and friends.  Without them…it would have been tough. 😉 
We started from the ground up.  What do we like…  Both owning countless pairs of cowboy boots we both insisted on wearing boots.  Which is also what we chose as gifts for our wedding party.   We took them cowboy boot shopping so they could each pick out a style to suit their personality.   With Andy’s Italian roots all the guys shoulders are as broad as a barn and hard as heck to find suit jackets to fit so we chose to have the jackets and shirts custom made to fit the guys and also for the fathers so they would be comfortable.   The girls simple yellow cotton dresses were made by a local gal.  I wanted something simple and with pockets and what wouldn’t require any special undergarments that would be uncomfortable for the girls.  
For Andy, he wore jeans, cowboy boots, crisp white shirts and suit jacket and tie accompanied by longhorn cufflinks to compliment our farm ‘mascot’ of a longhorn.  I wore an Enzoani dress with a vintage inspired belt, cowboy boots and vintage 1940’s jewerly & hairpins.
Now that the attire is out of the way….the fun stuff to me…DETAILS! 😉 
Growing up on farms we were blessed to have access to a lot of truly unique and rustic pieces.  And it means so much more that it’s straight from our family farms.   We made yard signs directing guests using barnwood from both our families barns.  Quilts made by my grandma.  Mason jars my mom has canned in since 1970.  All the hay for the ceremony seating and hayrides was bailed on our farm, our card and gift table was the front door from the original farmhouse and the cake table was made of an old barn door, pastry plates made from antique plates and goblets and the cake base was cut from an extra piece of log we used in creating the log entrance to the farm and multiple antique pieces for accents at the reception mostly found in my grandpas workshop and sheds.  These are pieces I chose to accent with flowers.  I used a mixture of greens and wildflowers to create a simple, country look.  We both like the easy, flowing look of wildflowers so the wedding party bouquets were left open and airy and tied with twine with the guys wearing simple yellow billy ball boutineers. Corsages had a twine bow and table  centerpieces were in anything from mason jars to old lunch pails to vintage flour and sugar containers.     
As guests arrived to the ceremony they were guided to a ‘parking field’ where a fall decorated haywagon would pick them up to transport them to the ceremony where they were asked to take a seat on a haybale and read the ‘newspaper’ which was what we used instead of programs.  It included a story about us, our wedding party, pet section featuring our two American Bulldogs, I Spy game, crossword puzzle and more.  As the 4pm ceremony time arrived the haywagons drove to the farmhouse and barn to pick up the bridesmaids and groomsmen.  Once they were dropped off my father and I were escorted by haywagon to the ceremony where we had a single guitar player in the field playing for the wedding.  We had chose to write our own vows which mine mentioned my deep love for Andy and also made mention of his beard.  And Andy professed the love he has for me and also my flaw being my obnixious zebra print bedroom slippers.  As a couple we keep things light and not overly serious and as I mentioned…true to us. Everyone has heard the ‘regular’ wedding vows so making them ours was important to us.  The ceremony was a quick 20 mins.  Then yard games, hayrides and vintage candy awaited guests as they waited for us to finish up pictures and get the reception started!!  Our ‘party bus’ was a ‘party tractor and wagon’ we cruised around the farm getting pictures with the beautiful fall leaves and reveling in the moment. 
Once at the reception we were treated to two of by far the BEST toasts around by my sister Sarah and Andy’s brother Sal.   They had everyone rolling in laughter and tears rolling down their faces.  Guests were seated by homemade seating cards clothespinned to twine on an old picket fence section.  They had a treat of trailmix in a mason jar to snack on.  We purchased brown bags and white wax bags to create ‘pockets’ for silverware and put salt and pepper in the white bags and had a stamp made to label them to keep it all neatly together we fastened it with a brad.   In lieu of a traditional guestbook we had mad-lib style guest cards slipped in each bag that everyone filled out…and they were hilarious to read the next few days after the wedding! After a long day what else do you eat on the farm but BBQ!!  All 400 of our closest family and friends chowed down on BBQ pulled pork, beef brisket, chicken, pork steaks and all the fixins!  After dinner it was on to dessert!  Lots of mini pastries, chocolate and white cake draped in chocolate buttercream, chocolate piped scrolling and brown M&M trim topped with a custom cake topper of Andy, myself and our dogs.  Then…the dancing began.  We had a county band playing all of our favorites and taking requests.   Everyone was a big dancing family enjoying the party..just what we wanted. 😉 
The night came to a close around 2am.  Tired, exhausted, and totally and completely happy we sat in our bar in the recliners eating cake watching the band pack up but all that was heard was crickets and bullfrogs in the distance and all we saw were the bright stars in the sky on a cool fall night.  This night was perfect.  This night was ours.  This was the start to our happily ever after.


Photographer: Hawes Photography / Reception Venue: Andy and Emily's Farm / Catering: Mercenary BBQ / Flowers & Decor: Emily Frisella (the bride!) / Cake Baker: Maggie's Lunchbox / Band: Rough Ryders / Hairstylist: Club Diva Salon / Bride’s Dress: Enzoani / Bride’s Shoes: Chuck's boots

I am looking to feature more real weddings on the blog, but I need your help.

Would you love to have your wedding featured? Or, maybe you know someone who would love to have their wedding featured.  Let me know (brit at landlockedbride dot com)!

So, what would this “real wedding” post include?

– Display photos from your day
– Discuss the details (vendors, decor, etc.)
– Share your feelings from the day

In this New Year, my goal is to feature more Midwestern brides on the blog – to give you readers a better connection to the world of the Midwest wedding industry.   And, I want to make sure I’m keeping you all coming back!

Happy New Year!

Today wraps up my feature of Grace’s wedding.  You can check out the previous posts here: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 and Part 4.

In creating the tables scapes and floral arrangements, Grace was looking for something simple and laid back, just like her. She found a planner, Tricia Huddas, who used the team at Garden on the Square to create her simple floral arrangements. Each of the arrangements were placed into jars and bottles from The Paris Market and then laid out on each of the reception tables.

I’m a huge fan of somehow finding a way to reuse the bridesmaids bouquets.  One way to do that is to have empty vases filled with water on the head table.  This allows the girls to place their bouquets in the vases once they arrive to the reception, and voila! You have an instant floral arrangement.

Grace took this to a new level by having her bridesmaids bouquets placed around the base of her wedding cake, an idea that I l-o-v-e, love.

All images courtesy of Belathée Photography via Design*Sponge.

You can check out more details from Grace’s wedding on her blog, Design*Sponge, or check out the Fall 2009 issue of Martha Stewart Weddings.

To create the escort cards, Grace used vintage wallpaper.  The wallpaper was scanned in to be duplicated and printed out on on tags.  They were attached to the petticoat dryer with clothespins.

Using the same wallpaper pattern, the Martha Stewart Weddings team assisted Grace in making notecards for guests to leave notes for the couple. They did not have a traditional guestbook, so the notecards were used instead, and guests placed them into the planter they put together.

All images courtesy of Belathée Photography via Design*Sponge

Since Georgia summers can be hot and humid, Grace decided to have fans made for her guests to use.  She used side profile photos of her, Aaron and their two cats, and Julia Rothman turned them into green silhouettes, and added their wedding date.  They were then printed out and attached to wooden sticks to make fans.

Favors for the guests were a throwback to Georgia’s roots.  They included grits from a local farm, as well as a recipe for Shrimp and Grits.  The grits were packaged in a paper bag, and the recipe was attached to the bags with a fabric button from busy beaver button.

Grace had some vintage handkerchiefs left over from the invitations, so she decided to use the remainder of them for her table numbers.  She had numbers screen printed onto each handkerchief and then wrap and tied them to a bottle of water.

All images courtesy of Belathée Photography via Design*Sponge

Throughout her wedding planning, Grace was able to utilize many local vendors to help her out with her vision.

She contacted the The Paris Market, who loaned her several antique chandeliers, which was used as outdoor lighting for the ceremony.

For her escort cards, Grace borrowed a vintage petticoat dryer and antique dresser from @home vintage general. The escort cards were attached to the petticoat dryer and family photos were placed on top of the dresser.

And, to keep guests dancing, Grace and Aaron hired The Corduroy Road, a bluegrass band based out of Athens, Georgia.

Images courtesy of Belathée Photography and Tara Tonne for Martha Stewart Weddings via Design*Sponge.

This week I’ll be posting about Grace over at Design*Sponge‘s wedding.  It was recently featured in the Fall issue of Martha Stewart Weddings and has so many wonderful DIY elements that made her wedding charming.

After reading about her wedding online and in Martha Stewart Weddings, I reached out to Grace because I really wanted to make sure you readers have access to all of her wonderful projects and details!

For their wedding invitations, Grace and Aaron used vintage/antique handkerchiefs, in addition to ones they received from family members.  They had their wedding details screen-printed on to each of the handkerchiefs.  As for the packaging, they wrapped the handkerchiefs around their RSVP card and the little package was held together with a woodgrain paper band.

All images are courtesy of Belathée Photography via Design*Sponge

Many of the male guests arrived to the wedding wearing the handkerchief invitations as their pocket squares! How sweet is that?!

Stay tuned tomorrow for another dose of Grace’s North meets South wedding!