As a blog, we don’t always hear from our readers. We know you’re there, we see you visiting everyday and on social media. So when we get a submission like today’s where we’re told bride Noel used Fab You Bliss as a huge source of inspiration for her wedding, our hearts completely melt. This definitely made our week! And if any of us could look as good as Noel after standing in the rain, we’d be thrilled to pieces.
Photographed by Breanna Elizabeth Photography, this day was one for the history books. From the sequin bridesmaid dresses to the handmade bouquets, every piece of this wedding was carefully planned and beautifully executed. Noel and Glen are both talented musicians, and they incorporated both their style and love for music into every aspect of the day. Noel’s blush dress was stunning and even though the weather called for rain all day, nothing could discourage the happy couple. Did we mention the ceremony was on an island? Amazing, huh? This wedding was overflowing with love and was a perfect reminder of what the celebration was all about.
From the Bride and Groom: Our goal from the beginning was for our wedding planning, as well as the day itself, to be as personal, relaxed, and joyful as possible. Even as it began to rain harder and harder during our outdoor ceremony we couldn’t help but laugh! Ironically, we had written our own vows two weeks before including the phrase “I will be yours… through every storm”! While we wouldn’t have asked for rain on our wedding day, we were in the middle of one of the happiest moments of our lives and getting wet wasn’t about to ruin that! Thankfully our guests agreed and everyone stayed. At the end of the day, I think the rain itself gave everyone a chance to feel like they had just experienced something truly “once in a lifetime”, which made it even more special for us!
We were very excited to have my husband’s youth pastor perform the ceremony and my youth pastors read scripture. After we read our vows we took communion together and washed each other’s feet so that our first acts in marriage were celebrating Christ’s love for us and serving each other.
Favorite Memory of the Day: Because of the layout of our ceremony location, we decided it would be best to do a first look, but we didn’t want our families to miss out on seeing the look on my husband’s face when he first saw me. We also wanted to have a chance to worship and pray together with our families before the ceremony, so we combined these two events into one “group first-look” and worship time. I never would have guessed that it would turn out so much better than we planned! Our parents, siblings, grandparents, and bridal party all stood on the front porch of my parents’ house while my husband waited. When I opened the door, he turned around to see me. Not only was his reaction priceless, but so was having everyone there to witness it! Then my husband and I held hands in the middle of the crowd while one of our groomsman led us in singing “One Thing Remains (Your Love Never Fails)” by Kristian Stanfill on acoustic guitar. With our love for music and the long journey of waiting for God to bring us together, it was absolutely incredible to begin our wedding day with worship. As we sang, I looked around at all of our closest friends and family and was just overwhelmed with how much joy was in that place. When we finished singing, we opened it up for anyone who wanted to pray. There wasn’t a dry eye and everyone’s hearts were overflowing. Afterwards, those present joked that it was so powerful that we might as well have performed the ceremony then as well! It is truly one of my favorite moments in life to date.
Handmade Details: From the beginning of our planning process, my husband and I knew that we wanted to make our wedding truly unique to who we are as individuals, as well as a couple. Here are all of the details in our day that we borrowed or made ourselves…
The Invitations: I was inspired by invitations I saw on Pinterest with a laser-cut scallop overlay, but didn’t have the budget to order them, so I designed and printed invitations through Smartpress, ordered doilies from Etsy, and my husband and I spent a whole evening gluing them. I hand-lettered the envelopes with a gold paint pen. They turned out exactly how I envisioned them and this was a huge savings!
Ceremony Chairs: We borrowed the wooden chairs we used for the ceremony from a church that we played at a few weeks before the wedding.
“Choose a Seat, Not a Side” Sign: We made this from scrap wood and lumber we found laying around my parents garage and I hand-painted it.
Ceremony Programs: I designed the programs and printed them through Smartpress then ordered tongue depressors and glued them one by one to turn them into a fan. Thankfully, I had a patient bridesmaid help me out with this project!
Custom Water Bottles: Not knowing what the weather would be like for our outdoor August wedding, we wanted to be prepared to take care of our guests. We bought a few cases of 4 oz. water bottles (smaller to have less waste) and took the original labels off. I printed small strips of paper with our wedding logo on them then my husband, mom, and I took a whole night to wrap each bottle with a logo and packing tape. The packing tape successfully water-proofed the labels which really impressed us. We had a few friends who weren’t in the wedding party on hand to give each guest a program and a water bottle as they came in.
Flowers: I ordered the flowers that were used for the bridesmaid/mother bouquets, grandmother corsages, groom/groomsman boutonnieres, and the reception through FlowerMuse. Because we were trying to plan as a small budget, I ordered 100 stems of white spray roses which were extremely inexpensive ($119), but plenty. The day before the wedding, one of my bridesmaids helped me go around my family’s property and cut Queen Anne’s lace and tiny wildflowers to add to the mix, then we arranged them together. (She was such a life-saver!) I’m still so impressed that we were able to spread the spray roses so far!
Bridal Bouquet: I wanted my bouquet to be inexpensive, whimsical, and full of wildflowers so my parents and I went to the local farmer’s market the morning before the wedding, picked a few bouquets, and I mixed and matched them to create my bouquet. My brother actually helped me make the final decision on which flowers to use! I finished it off by wrapping the bouquet in twine. On the morning of our wedding, my husband gave me his purity ring on a chain as part of my wedding gift. I wanted to make it a bigger part of our day, so I wrapped it around my bouquet. It was the perfect unique personal touch and meant a lot to both of us!
Boutonnieres/Bridesmaid Bouquets: Each bouquet/boutonniere was made up of white spray roses (a single rose for the boutonnieres), a tiny pink wildflower sprig, a feather, and wrapped in twine. Given that I didn’t have a specific vision for either of these and it was our first time making them, the boutonnieres especially, turned out way better than I could have imagined.
Bridal Prep Room: My bridesmaids and I used a sunroom off of my grandparents’ house to get ready. After the rehearsal dinner, a few of my bridesmaids, myself, and my mom transformed the room with all of the necessities— full-length mirrors (which I bought at WalMart and spray-painted gold), straight pins, safety pins, and, of course, lots of flowers! We used the flowers that were left over from the farmer’s market bouquets I used to make my bouquet, an old wedding catalog we found at my grandparents’ house, and a sign that read “Love Never Fails” (that I found at TJMaxx the week before) to add the finishing touches and make it photo-ready before we brought in portable clothing racks and added the bridesmaid dresses. I absolutely loved the way that it turned out and how much natural light we had in the room (even though it was drizzling outside)!
Custom-Name Hangers: These were a last minute addition. I knew that I wanted photos of all of the dresses together and couldn’t have imagined my bridesmaids’ gorgeous sequin dresses hanging on anything less! I bought a set of 10 hangers at Lowe’s, spray-painted them gold, and wired each of their names (as well as “bride” and “mother of the bride”) with gold crafting wire. The names were attached by drilling a tiny wire-sized hole into each side of the hanger and sliding them in. (I’d recommend adding glue for better security!)
Bride’s Floral Crown: My floral crown was made up of a strand of wired flowers that I bought for $.40 at a local church rummage sale a few months before the wedding, a flower pin that I bought at H&M after I had seen my dress on the internet (but before we were actually engaged!), and a flower that I had bought for my original wedding dress from a previous engagement (a huge story of redemption in my life). I pieced it together in a half an hour one night and it turned out exactly how I wanted it to on the first try! Though it may have seemed rather insignificant, the origination of each flower held a special significance to me in the way that it represented our love story.
Bride’s Earrings: My earrings were borrowed from my vocal instructor, one of my closest friends. They were a vintage set from her late mother and they were perfect!
Bride’s Shoes: My shoes were basic off-white pumps from Charlotte Russe. They were exactly the size and shape that I wanted, but seemed to lack a bit of luster, so I added a pair of my great-grandmother’s clip-on earrings as shoe clips. They stayed on all day without a problem and added just the amount of class that I was looking for!
Groom’s Gift: From the time we started dating, my husband and I have both been blown away by how our story represents God’s grace and faithfulness in each of our lives. As a result, those words have become our personal “slogan” of sorts. I knew that I wanted his gift to be personal, so when I discovered custom-handwriting necklaces on Etsy, I knew that would be perfect! I ordered him a dog tag with the words “grace & faithfulness” as well as our wedding date inscribed in my handwriting. I’m so impressed with how it turned out and he loved it!
Reception Entrance Sign: We found a piece of a bunch of connected scrap pieces of wood, attached a rope to hang it from, and I painted our names and wedding date. It now hangs above the door in our apartment!
Seating Chart: We found a set of rustic-looking shutters (the more chipped paint, the better), stood it on an antique easel, hand-lettered a list of guests for each table, and attached them to the shutters along with pictures of our parents’ and grandparents’ weddings.
Place Settings: I designed a thank you card for our guests, which were placed on the plates. Each table had a bottle/vase or two of the white roses/flowers, as well as an artificial candle, on a handmade crochet doily. Each place setting was finished off with a wooden stump name card. The vases and doilies, which I’ve collected over the years (and love!), were all different.
Name Cards: These were 100% my husband’s project. He found a design that he liked on Pinterest, then spent days trekking into the woods, cutting down branches, cutting each individual name card holder, then cutting a slit in each stump just big enough to fit the name card. For the name cards themselves, I cut pieces of card stock then hand-lettered them with a gold paint pen.
Floral Arch: During our planning process, I saw a picture on Instagram of a dreamy arch made of branches and covered in flowers. We had already decided to not work with a florist (in order to cut costs), so we decided to tackle this project ourselves. My husband cut the stumps, drilled a hole in the center, filled them with concrete to weight the base, and added branches. The cross-branch was wired to each of the posts. We then took a trip to Hobby Lobby, bought artificial flowers, and I wired them together and attached them to the branches. This was just a little something extra that we wanted to add behind our sweetheart table to emphasize the whimsical flowery theme and it turned out great!
Monogram Marquee: This was a DIY project that I saw online. I bought cardboard letters at Target (about $4 a piece), cut the tops off with an X-ACTO knife, drilled holes for the lights, then spray-painted them gold and laced the Christmas lights through. We ended up using the marquee as a decoration on our cookie table (it’s a Pennsylvania thing) along with some orange crates that I spray-painted gold. This was one of my favorite projects! Gold spray paint literally became my best friend during our planning process.
Record Player: We used a vintage record player as a decoration on our guestbook/gift table. I took the turntable off, spray-painted it gold, and topped it off with a spray-painted record. This was another one of my favorite little details!
Guestbook Map: I wanted to do something different for a guestbook that we could take into our new life and home together and loved the idea of using a map, but I couldn’t find anything quite like what I had in mind. I ended up taking a clip of a vintage map that I found on Google Images, adding some Kacey Musgraves lyrics because, they’re perfect (“Anywhere beside you is a place that I’ll call home” from her song “My House”), and printing it through VistaPrint. Guests signed it with silver and gold paint pens, I painted a frame, and it hangs prominently in our brand new apartment! We love seeing their personal notes to us all the time— a reminder of the special people in our lives and the day they all came together to celebrate our wedding!
Music: My husband and I are both musicians, so at the reception we surprised everyone with a duet as our first dance! My fiance and I were secretly mic-ed beforehand and sang “All of Me” by John Legend as we danced. It was a total surprise to everyone, including our parents, and their reactions were all priceless!
Given that music is our job, the pressure was on for our music to be great throughout the day. Our goal was set the tone by keeping everything fairly upbeat rather than somber. Here’s a playlist
of our big moments:
Walking Down the Aisle: “Multiplied” by Needtobreathe
Communion/Feet-Washing: “Draw Near” by Bethel Music
Recessional: “This Is What You Do” by Bethel Music
Reception Entrance: “Happy” by Pharrell Williams
First Dance: “All of Me” by John Legend (performed by the bride and groom)
Anniversary Dance: “My Girl Tonight” by Jon McLaughlin
Father/Daughter Dance: “The Best Day” by Taylor Swift
Mother/Son Dance: “Never Alone” by Lady Antebellum
Reception Exit: “Marry You” by Bruno Mars
Advice for Future Brides: The most important thing to remember is that your marriage is more important than your wedding day. Though my husband and I genuinely enjoyed planning our wedding together in 6 months, it’s inevitable to have moments of being overwhelmed. Don’t let it get to you! As far as practical advice goes, we took a few pieces of advice to heart that are worth passing on. First, have your parents sit on opposite sides of you so they can each watch their child’s face throughout the ceremony. Your parents will be thankful that you thought of them- ours loved it! Secondly, if you do a bride & groom exit after the reception, let everyone leave the venue ahead of you so that you have a moment alone to breathe and take it all in. We loved this! The last piece of advice came from some of our married friends— stick together during the reception. That way you talk to the same people and have the same memories when you’re looking back.
Photography: Breanna Elizabeth Photography // Wedding Shoes: Charlotte Russe (Great Grandmother’s Vintage Clips) // Groomsmen’s Tie Clips: JLynnCreations // Bridesmaids’ Gifts: Groopdealz // Groom’s Gift: Madison House Designs // Videographer: LightMotion Studios // DJ: DJ Highland // Floral Design: Flower Muse (arranged by the Bride) // Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Rent the Runway // Wedding Dress: Watters WToo // Officiant: Scott Stevens // Ceremony Venue: Mammoth Park // Reception Venue and Catering: Bell’s Banquets // Noel’s website // Glenn’s website
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