It's always so special when a couple takes a hands-on, do-it-yourself approach to their wedding, especially when their families and friends also chip in to help. Danielle and Justin's wedding was a true family affair, and it turned out beautifully.
From the bride, Danielle:
My husband and I met in college at Ohio University when we were still roaming the streets of Athens without a care in the world. He worked at the Pub and on Sundays my girlfriends and I would come in and get some good greasy food to "recharge" us for the week ahead... and so I could flirt with the burly man that worked in the kitchen. Fast forward five years and that same burly man is asking me to be wife while we were spending a weekend in Geneva on the Lake.
Over the years we talked about little details we hoped for in our wedding day. Justin knew he did not want to wear a tux and I wanted to get married in a barn. We both knew we wanted a rustic, laid-back feel where our guests could enjoy good food and great music. First, we set out to find a barn and after looking at everything from a horse barn with no floor to a barn with only three walls, we decided we need something a little more realistic for a large wedding. My parents found out that Mapleside Farms, a place I grew up going to as a child, was just about to finish a barn to be used for weddings and events. After one look, we knew it was perfect -- truly it was better than we could have ever imagined. After booking our venue, we quickly booked our photographers and band.
Justin and I both are hands on, do it yourself type of people and when it came to our wedding this was no different. Pinterest was both a blessing and a curse because every time I came across another detail or project, we decided we could make it happen -- and for the most part we did. We knew we could not do everything, though, and we are lucky enough that our family shares our do it yourself attitude. My dad built us all the centerpiece boxes out of old pallets while my mom stained them. I garbage picked the old window and cleaned it up along with working on all the chalkboard signs. We did all of our place cards and ceremony programs from our own computer. Two of our good friends were kind enough to create and draw our amazing fingerprint tree. We collected mason jars and filled them with popcorn for our wedding favors with help from our sister in law. We gathered up used shotgun shells for the boutonnieres and pieced together the men's wear from places like Kohls and Dillard's to create the look Justin wanted. My mom collected old wine crates from grocery stores to add to our decor. We used bushel baskets for the aisle way and my mother in law made the burlap bows, both were re-purposed as decorations throughout the reception after the ceremony. My dad found Holly, our wedding coordinator, and she helped the day-of to bring all these little details together and make our wedding day truly magical. It rained all day and you would never know it by looking at our pictures. Even when we think back to our wedding day, we don't remember the rain because the party atmosphere in the barn was everything we could have hoped for.
It is hard to pick a favorite memory of the day because so many wonderful things happened. The day started as my dad was driving my bridesmaids and myself to the venue to finish getting ready, the first song that played on the radio was the song for our father daughter dance - Memories by Elvis. It was random and awesome and was the perfect way to start the day. Our first look is definitely one of my favorite moments, though. We were both nervous and when I tapped him on the shoulder I couldn't help but strike an awkward pose. We both laughed and we were able to relax a little bit and just enjoy the moment. Another favorite was during our vows, the officiant asked us to turn around and look out to the guests to take in all the love in the room. It was overwhelmingly touching and a great reminder of all the wonderful people in our life.
All photos by One Red Door Photography.
Ceremony & Reception: The Barn at Mapleside Farm
Officiant: Unity Ceremonies - Matt Rutkowski
Photographer: One Red Door Photography - Dustin & Melissa Lopez
Dress: "Ashland" by Watters, from Something White, A Bridal Boutique
Alterations & Accessories: Miranda's Vintage Bridal
Florist: Joann, a family friend that worked out of her home
Ceremony/Cocktail hour music: Joshua Robert, Cleveland Music Group
Reception band: The Element Band, Cleveland Music Group
Transportation: A Touch of Class
Cake: Kathy's Cakery
Wedding Coordinator: Peace of Mind Wedding & Event Planning - Holly Collins
Stationery: Cotton Ink