landlocked bride® | midwest + mountain west wedding inspiration

plan a modern wedding in the middle of the country

Although I’m sure many of us have spring and summer on our minds with the way this  crazy Midwest winter has been, this cold, icy day has me thinking about hot chocolate. What better treat after the ceremony or at the end of the reception than a hot chocolate bar complete with marshmallows and mint flavored candy sticks (or even consider including  coffee or cookies!) to warm you (and your guests) up during your winter wedding? Hot chocolate isn’t just for the holiday season. We’ve just got a few weeks left of this cold season, so we might as well embrace it, right? Warm up with a cup of hot cocoa and these pretty hot chocolate bar ideas below.


Brinton Studios via Style Me Pretty


Birdsong Photography via Polka Dot Bride


Hostess with the Mostess


Ariel Renae Photography via The Knot Blog


Green Wedding Shoes


Benjamin Edwards via BridalHood


Harwell Photography via Style Me Pretty


Rachel Peters Photography via 100 Layer Cake


Paige Alisa Photography


Angela Fortin Snyder Photography


With lots of snow blanketing the country, it’s perfectly appropriate to share this snowy Aspen style shoot with some really creative details. I’m personally loving the stamped paper goods, hot toddy bar, and glittery accessories.


From the Event Coordinator:

Aspen in the winter is truly magical. We coordinated and styled this shoot at the Aspen Meadows as a slightly different take on the traditional “Aspen winter wedding.” We wanted to offer something a bit more edgy and hipster-esque while still pulling the elements one might expect like antlers, pine cones and flashy cars!

Coordinator/Decor: Bluebird Productions / Photographer: Shannon Grey Photography / Venue/Cake: The Aspen Meadows / Bride’s Dress: Monique Lhuillier from Anna Be Bridal Salon / Bride’s Shoes: Sorel / Groom’s Attire: Ralph Lauren / Hair & Makeup: Mi Hair / Invitations & Stationery: Express Yourself / Flowers: Carolyn's Flowers / Jewelry: Meridian Jewelers / Models: Kate Ryan, Lane Johnson

While most of the country hasn’t experienced snow yet, I’m digging this little taste of wintery goodness in today’s real wedding. The couple really embraced the cold and snow, still traipsing around the Windy City for photos. And while the weather was freezing, the ceremony and family incorporated in the day was absolutely filled with warmth, including a ring warming ceremony, a family heirloom dress refashioned and reworn, and a tree cut down and brought from elsewhere to bring a bit of another “home” to Chicago.

From the Photographer:

Lindsay and Chris had a February Wedding…in Chicago. They did not let the cold weather or snow hold them back from going around the city for photos. Lindsay, in her grandmother’s gown, strapped on her Sorel boots and we photographed them downtown and in Lincoln Park. Although it was chilly, a fresh snowfall a couple of days before made the city look picturesque. All the bridesmaids and groomsmen also joined in the fun wearing their coats and boots, or just rocking the heels, for pictures. This couple had a beautiful ceremony on the third floor of The Ravenswood Event Center, and also had dinner and dancing on the third floor. This was a great way to showcase the space and the tree that Lindsay’s parents chopped and brought from Michigan on a truck. 

From the Bride and Groom:

How we met:
We literally met while walking down the street. We had both been at a summer concert at the Lincoln Park Zoo with separate groups of friends. After the concert, my friend and I headed up to Clark street to grab a few drinks. As my friend and I were walking, this very cute guy started chatting with us. We talked briefly and then went our separate ways. About an hour later, my friend and I were leaving the bar and we heard someone calling to us from down the street. We turned around to find that it was the same handsome stranger. 🙂 He came up and asked if we wanted to join him and his friends for a drink. He had the best smile, and over some late night pizza he asked if he could call me. I replied, “you better!.” He called the next day and the rest is history. 

How we got engaged:
We have a history of having picnics on the beach in Chicago in the summer, so when Chris planned a picnic for us one night in late June., I didn’t think anything of it. The forecast was for thunderstorms and I suggested several times that maybe we go to dinner instead. It now makes sense why insisted that we go for a picnic – and why he ate so fast!! After we finished eating, he got down on one knee and proposed! It was very simple, very sweet, and very much us. He cracked open the champagne he brought and watched the lightening over the lake in the distance. 

What details were most important for you for your wedding?
The actual wedding was the most important part for us. Chris’ sister, Katie, married us. The three of us wrote our own ceremony and our own vows. The ceremony was very personal. We had a small wedding, by Chicago standards, with 100 guests that were all friends and family we have know for at least 15 years! We really wanted everyone to feel welcome to have fun! (No stiff wedding traditions or over dramatic decor!)

One of favorite things that we did: we passed around our rings around during the ceremony for everyone to bless or give us their well wishes. When we did the exchange of rings towards the end of the ceremony, it was very powerful knowing it had been touched by everyone in the room. It’s so meaningful to wear my ring knowing that I’m carrying love not only from my husband, but also from our friends and family.

How did you incorporate family history into your wedding? Dress, cake topper, other details?

I wore my grandmothers wedding gown from 1941. It was originally long sleeved and with a high neckline, so we worked with Alice Padrul to re-designed the dress using all of the original fabric and buttons. Alice added some beautiful lace and detail work to update the dress while still preserving the vintage feel of the dress.

We also used the same cake topper that my grandparents used in 1941. It has been used in all of our family weddings, including my mom’s and my brother’s!

Photographer: Studio Starling / Hairstylist: Morgan Blaul / Makeup Artist: Jennifer O'Leary - Make-up by Jen / Bride’s Dress: Alice Padrul / Groom’s Attire: Men's Warehouse / Flowers & Decor: Anna Held Floral / Reception Venue: Ravenswood Event Center / Cake Baker: Molly's Cupcakes / Invitations & Stationery: Wystar Design / DJ: Natalie from Toast and Jam / Transportation: Windy City Limo

I arrived home late on New Year’s Even from my vacation in Florida and happened to wake up on New Year’s Day to find a dusting of snow on the ground and flakes continuing to fall. I must say, even though it was 12 degrees (brrr…), there is something very romantic about snow falling.

And, there is something even more romantic about snow falling on your wedding day.


Images courtesy of Hoffer Photography

It snowed last week while I was on vacation in Florida.  I’m not going to lie when I say I didn’t miss it.  I really only love the snow when I’m in the mountains (which would equal Colorado to me).  The only other place I love snow?  On a wedding day.

Nicole Green shot this wedding in Indiana, who happened to be an old friend of hers from high school.  Nothing more perfect than a winter wedding. Except when it snows on the wedding day.

Image courtesy of Nicole Green

So the holidays are upon us, and I just love Christmas (mostly for reasons like snow, Christmas trees and Christmas lights and Mint M&Ms).  I wanted to share this winter wedding with you all, as the cool air (and snow, whether you like it or not), is just around the corner.

The candles in the snow creates a gorgeous, warm light. (The image on the right is of “snow” from area mountains). And, the berry crumble bites look delicious and festive! And, I big puffy heart the snowmen photo booth. It’s adorable without being too cliche.

Images courtesy of Karen Moredechai via Style Me Pretty