I am incredibly proud to say that I am a Little White Dress featured bride this week! I still can’t thank them enough for helping me have my fairy tale wedding dress moment. I’m honored to be on their site. Now that I’m a mom and I’m not in the same shape I was then, remembering how I felt in my dress at this moment brings a huge grin to my face and a tear to my eye. Every girly girl deserves their perfect dress.
I’m sure that long time readers know how much I loved our wedding photographer. I had only one complaint. Due to a misunderstanding, there were basically zero pictures of the decor that I worked so hard on. My friend, Gena, took some photos before the wedding which was good because the ones she got were ones that would be very hard to recreate (flowers, seating cards, etc.). However, the lack of pictures of the centerpieces, or even the tables in general, was particularly devastating for me. So after one full year of it eating away at me, I ponied up the dough to re-stage my decor photos. Now I can finally show you the wonderful decor that I loved so much and you can finally understand the vision for our wedding instead of just how the day progressed. The following is an assemblage of old and new photos. All images are by Gena McMillan unless otherwise noted. I hope you enjoy!
(Image intensive post ahead)
The view of Taharaa as you turn to go into the parking lot.
The direction signs I made, in situ.
The first item in our ceremony space was the table with the fingerprint tree, bubbles, and fans. I had no clue how to decorate this space so I’m thankful we had extra flowers, nests, etc. and a very thoughtful Maid of Honor.
At the head of each aisle were the moss covered letters I made. (Photo by Justin Edmonds) They hung from wreath holders with birds on top that I got on clearance at Hobby Lobby. I painted them this lovely bronzed color with a hammered finish spray paint. On either side of the altar were bunches of pussy willow branches.
We were married under a 9ft tall frame that my husband made. I had the idea pretty early on and I’m pleased at how he executed it. We kept the ceremony space pretty simple in part because we were running out of money and it was the shorter part of the wedding and also because Jake felt we should let the beauty of the place speak for itself. He said, “Why did we choose such a beautiful place just to cover it up?” I know I married him for a reason. ;) (Photo by Justin Edmonds)
After the cocktail hour, guests were shown into the rest of the reception space. I had seen escort cards arranged on ribbon before and decided to go with that idea. We chose to go with a variety of lengths and widths, however, to make it interesting. Also on the table were a very aged mirror that used to live in my mom’s yard, a taller cloche with bird’s nest and bird statues, and mercury glass pillar holders. The cards were incredibly difficult to arrange and I’m so happy I have patient and intelligent bridesmaids who took on the task for me when I was hyperactive and freaking out pre-wedding. The ribbon is the same used on our DIY invites.
Each table had a champagne pin-tuck silk tablecloth and sage silk napkins. To save money, we didn’t provide unnecessary silverware. We had dinner forks and knives plus a desert fork for cake.
Each table also had a framed table number, tiny salt and pepper shakers, and aged mercury glass votive holders. I saw shakers like these at a restaurant in the Highlands and loved them. Then I found them for $1 a set at Michaels in their rotating $1 aisle! They are just the right size for one table for one meal. I designed the table numbers and put them into small frames. These frames were also from the cheapo aisle at Michaels but we painted them out prior to use to make them all match. Putting them all back together after painting them and filling the shakers were our groomsmen tasks before the bachelor party.
We had two centerpiece varieties. One was this preserved bird’s nest under a glass cloche. I got the idea from a home magazine cutout I had for years. I loved the idea of a little piece of nature being frozen in time.
I formed mounds of potting soil in big, glass bowls from Michaels. We (my mom worked tirelessly with me) cut circles out of preserved moss matting to go over the soil. The moss sheets were purchased on Ebay because I couldn’t find them in stores. The nests sat on the mounds surrounded by preserved mushrooms and this really neat, scalloped, beige moss I got in a bag at the craft store.
Here is a closeup of the nests. I had a really hard time finding nests I liked but finally found them online. I filled them with loose, green moss that I got online (again, hard to find what I wanted in stores). I added feathers from the craft store and dehydrated maidenhair fern (online). After MANY attempts at making eggs that looked good, I found these awesome blown out quail eggs on Amazon. I adore them!
Our other variety of centerpiece was a live plant arrangement on a large, glass cake plate. I wanted it to feel like Oregon but I think in some ways it felt like Jurassic Park. I still loved them though.
The live centerpieces were made of maidenhair fern, rabbit’s foot fern (in hindsight these plants have root projections that look like tarantula legs), and baby tears. My mom and I went to Paulino Gardens and got larger pots of them to separate for the final product. I had put a lot of thought into the other centerpieces but not much into these. Luckily, I gave my mom all the pieces and she made a really beautiful product with basically no direction. I certainly get my craftiness from her. <3
The whole centerpiece sits on a large, glass cake stand from Hobby Lobby. The plants are surrounded by pads of preserved pillow moss, rocks, and the beige moss (craft store). The nests I found online and the eggs in this case were plastic. I thought the finished product, all served up on a cake plate was charming and woodsy. I love to have live things around and it lended an earthy smell that made me think of the woods.
Lastly, we have the favor/sweets table. I made several signs for the wedding using the same style as our invitations. This one, from our favor table, is a song by Shirley Temple that my mom used to sing to me before bed when I was little. I now sing it to my son and it’s really cool to have been able to incorporate that into the wedding.
I made the favor bags out of brown paper lunch bags. The “Thank You” is printed but the pussy willow design is from the same custom stamp that I used on our Save the Dates. These were actually way harder to make than I’d like to admit because of the shape of the bags and how I had to rework the bottoms of them. If you want the how-to, let me know.
The Horizon Milk favors were iced in large, metal buckets that I got at Target.
We had a variety of jars filled with our favorite chocolate (Dove), the Easter candy I adore that fit the theme (Cadbury Mini Eggs), Jake’s favorite cookies (Chocolate Chip from Albertson’s), my favorite cookies (Dani’s Pumpkin Cookies…shown here with Dani), and Divinity. I made little signs in the same style as the others and hung them from the lids of the jars using the same ribbon we used in our invitations and on the escort card table. (Photo by Justin Edmonds)
So I guess that’s about it. Our wedding decor was the culmination of many people’s hard work and talent. I loved our wedding day. It made me so nostalgic and happy to re-stage some of these things. A major rush of emotions hit me and I was reminded how much I love weddings. I could get married every day!
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