Ok, so the title for this one is a bit misleading as I didn’t do everything myself. I actually have the best friends and family and everyone pitched in to make our day special. I wanted to share our wedding on the blog as the majority of the wedding was homemade and handcrafted. We both love the outdoors and feel most connected when we are in the woods, surrounded by nature. Our favourite time of year is the fall when things slowdown from summer madness and cooler weather invites a perfect opportunity to explore with way less mosquitos. Fall is when we get to enjoy nature the most between hiking, hiding out at our cabin, or hunting so we decided to get married right before fall hit in full force…aka the week before Moose Hunting Season – oopsie.
We knew from the beginning that we didn’t want a large wedding; we even contemplated eloping or only inviting our parents and siblings. However, we decided that we would be happiest surrounded by our closest family and friends, guests who would bring nothing but joy to our day and who bring nothing but joy to our lives. We are very social, but we are also private in our emotions. We keep a small circle and we are both perfectly happy to isolate ourselves in the woods somewhere away from the buzz of the rest of the world every once in a while. Having a large wedding was never in the cards. We went with a woodsy theme, found the most perfect venue to accommodate that.
September 17, 2016 was the perfect day for a wedding, beautiful, comfortably warm, and not a raindrop fell from the sky. I don’t know how the day could have been any more perfect than it was… I don’t think I’ve ever smiled so much in one day – or two, as the celebrations lingered into the wee hours of the next morning, the last thing we wanted was for it to end.
Before I showcase the pieces I created, I need to give credit to some amazing friends and family contributions to our big day.
The flowers. The flower arrangements and bouquets were ingeniously planned by my now mother-in-law. Flowers are not an area I am comfortable in, I’m sure it was frustrating for her to have to explain what each type was when asking what I wanted. As if that wasn’t enough, I chose to have a fall wedding but did not want any of the fall colours – as if living in Canada allows you to get flowers that aren’t in season! Despite all of that she came up with the most perfect selections and made probably the most elegant bouquets and arrangements ever. She made birch bark vases for all of the arrangements and incorporated cedar to help tie in the woodsy theme we went with – brilliant!
The cake. The cake was so attractive and delicious (sometimes you don’t get both!) thanks to my good friend Kristy who is a talented cake maker/decorator. Just thinking about it makes me hungry it was sooo good. I just wanted a small white cake with some cupcakes and she make a beautiful cake with lots and lots of cupcakes – was so happy that we had some leftovers.
Hair & Make Up. We had a great glam team to help us get prettied up for the day. It was a relaxed morning and we enjoyed it with lots of laughs. Both the hair stylist and Make Up artist were such a big help and so very talented at what they do. So happy Tracy from Evolution Beauty in Saint George and Rebeca Shaw-Cook with Arbonne were a part of the day.
Photographs. We were so lucky to have a close friend capture our day, she is so very talented and easy to work with. We loved all of the photos so much – every time I look through them I go back to that day. If you’re looking for a photographer for your big day, or even just family photos, head over to Jen Harris Photography.
The builds. I spent the summer building wooden benches for our guests to sit on during the ceremony. The cost of the supplies for each bench was about $20 and each seated approx. six people. The cost was significantly less than what we would have paid to rent chairs and chair covers, and the result proved to accompany our woodsy theme better than the chairs ever could have! “Yeah, but what if it rains”, you say? Well, we would have moved the benches indoors and still it would have been beautiful. The benches were a hit and for the short ceremony they were comfortable enough. They went quickly after the wedding, I planned to leave any extra benches for our camp but that wasn’t even necessary as they all found new homes! Plans can be found here.
My favourite part of the whole décor lineup was these aisle markers. I made these from 1×12 pine boards. I wood burned the phrases on them and stained them. This took more time than money but they were worth every bit of work I put into them.
With the help of my Maid of Honour we made these signs that were used throughout the venue. Buying signs like these or renting them can be costly. A little time and effort, you can save a lot and make them yourself…and a bonus, I had no problem selling them after it was all over.
I wish I had some photos of the chairs my Dad made for the kids to sit on during the ceremony. As soon as I get some I will upload them here.
Bridal party – A lot of people ask me where I purchased the outfits.
Bridesmaid dresses. I found online, from a Montreal Boutique www.1861.ca and they were under $100 each.
The shirts. I found on LLBean and I was super nervous about the colour but in the setting it ended up working perfectly.
The suspenders. I found on Amazon.
The ties. I bought at Sears.
The pants. from Old Navy.
Daniel’s vest was a bit more complicated – it’s actually really hard to find an authentic tweed vest in the western world. I found one I loved from JCrew but it was sold out before I even stumbled upon it. Luckily, the company I work for has a Scotland division and I messaged one of my coworkers from across the pond and she hooked me up with Edinburgh Woolen Mill and wolla ! I ordered an authentic Harris Tweed vest and they shipped it back with another employee that went over to visit!
My Dress. I found at Carousel Bridal in Rothesay, NB on my first visit. The staff was great and super helpful.
This is how we had a DIY wedding, with the help of many friends and family!