From the get go, bride Mallory told photographer Maison Meredith Photography that the groom, Danny, wanted to turn the traditional wedding day “on its head” and create a timeline and celebration that was totally unique to them. Considering the entire wedding was supposed to be outside but it ended up snowing, I think they did what they aimed to, and in a perfectly pretty navy and gold way!
From the Bride: Overall: We were hoping for a truly unique and fun wedding, but also hoped it would translate our love and commitment in a meaningful and personalized way. Since we’re both musicians, throughout the planning processes we knew that we really wanted to feature live music throughout the day; from the ceremony to dinner/cocktail hour and after-party. We also wanted to do something unique with the food, as we didn’t want the standard catering of “roast beef and dry chicken,” which lead us to the food cart idea. With the limited venues in Madison, often tying you down to their caterer as well, we opted for the park, where we would ultimately have the ability to have a blank canvas to start with.
Danny and I thought we were prepared for unpredictable weather, and had a backup plan for rain, but never were we expecting 30mph wind gusts and flurries on our wedding day; especially when the weekend before was 80 degrees and sunny! Needless to say, the forecast was definitely a stressor leading up to the big day, and we had to re-think a lot of elements to make sure people were comfortable and cozy at the park. Although we had originally intended to have our ceremony outside, we both agree that moving the ceremony under our tent, smack dab in the middle of our guests with heaters pumping made for a very intimate setting. As both Danny and I are “planners,” enjoying entertaining and throwing parties, the flow of the wedding as a whole consumed much of our focus. We also wrote our entire ceremony, which ended up being quite a labor of love!
We knew from the get-go that we wanted our ceremony to be officiated by a friend, as we had all too often been to weddings where the officiant and the couple seem like strangers to each other. Our good friend Joe was our prime candidate from the beginning, since we knew of his extensive theatrical and public speaking background, and he knew us and our relationship quite well. I’ve known for a long time that I wanted “I Won’t Give Up” as my processional, and having Danny sing me down the aisle along with our wedding party really created a touching, unique moment. Our dads’ song, “You’ve Got a Friend,” and our brother and sister song, “I Will,” were also features we knew we wanted early in the planning process. The reading we included, “Rosie and Michael,” was something that Danny found online, and it was totally cute and very us! Since we looked for ways to make our ceremony cohesive, we decided to focus on the theme of friendship and partnership, and this reading seemed to fit nicely.
Favorite Moments: From the moment we started planning, we knew that we wanted the day to feel like “us” in every sense. This basically meant turning the traditional wedding on its head and re-writing the day so that every element was something meaningful for us. This included such things as food carts for caterers, live bands at every venue, having our good friend marry us and including a song by our fathers and brother and sister in the ceremony. Our hand-written ceremony was definitely our favorite element of the day, even though it was quite difficult to pull together!
We also had a BLAST throwing an “after party” at a live music venue and performing a few tunes ourselves.
Favorite Details/Design: I knew I wanted our color scheme to be neutral and elegant, so for me, navy and gold with pops of white and LOTS of bling was a given. In another attempt at making sure that the ceremony felt like “us,” we incorporated chopsticks and origami paper cranes in a nod to Danny’s Japanese roots, and shocks of wheat straight from Kansas, where Danny was born. While all three projects were definitely time-consuming, seeing the way our guests reacted to such personal touches made it all worth it. I also am so, so glad I let our wedding party pick their own dresses and suits. Since our party is a very eclectic group, having them stay true to their own style within our gray/navy/gold color scheme definitely makes the photos seem more organic and natural!
Advice: Definitely, definitely do not be afraid of changing up traditional details of a wedding and replacing them with your own touches. If budget or time threatens to prevent you from sticking to what YOU want to do as a couple, force yourselves to sit down and discuss the top three things you want your wedding to contain, and then stick to those elements in the plan! Your guests will definitely take notice and you as a couple won’t regret committing to those memorable details!
Thanks for stopping by!
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>Photographer: Maison Meredith Photography // Equipment Rentals: A La Crate Vintage Rentals // Caterer: Banzo // Dress Store: Brandi’s Bridal Galleria // Other: Cafe Social // Bakery: Cair for Cheesecake // Event Planner: Cherry Blossom Events // Design and Decor: Event Essentials // Floral Designer: Flora.designs by Jamae // Caterer: Good Food // Reception Venue: High Noon Saloon // Pre Ceremony Location: Hotel Ruby Marie // Ceremony Location: James Madison Park // Caterer: Soho Gourmet Cuisines // Band: The Dang-Its // Caterer: Upstairs Downstairs Catering // Submitted via Two Bright Lights