Okay friends, so last week I shared about a new mini series I’m starting on the blog! For the next couple of weeks, on Wednesday, I will be sharing different aspects of our wedding. From how I planned it, to staying on budget, how I coordinated the style, and much more. Planning a wedding is a lot of work, but I can honestly say that as I’ve been planning these posts and looking back at photos, it really was worth it. I love having all of these memories to look back on, because it really does take you back to that day! At the end of my mini series I’ll be sharing our wedding video on the blog as well, so make sure to follow along so you can see that at the end. I’m going to start the first week off with talking about our decor and how I kept it simple yet extravagant.
Even before Cameron and I got engaged I knew I wanted a ton of flowers. To me, flowers are what make your space stand out. You can have the most beautiful vases and candle holders in the world but if you don’t have a good florist you may as well forget about the rest. Your flowers are what set the tone and the mood for your whole ceremony and reception. For us, deep and moody Fall colors were what we wanted. In our minds we pictured a beautiful clear day, with deep red flowers and a ton of greenery. So, when I began planning everything I based all of my decor choices around this. I would say my biggest tip when starting to plan a wedding would be this- figure out your colors and the feel you want your wedding to have. Once you get those down it will make it much easier to find decor that goes with that theme. I have to say, we were so blessed on our wedding day! Not only did we have a beautiful blue sky, but it was also a bit chilly, and that is literally exactly what we had hoped for.
Okay moving on to the decor. I really kept things somewhat simple. Wedding’s can really start to add up once you start to add all the little details. So with that being said, we did a lot of the decor on our own. We bought old furniture and redid it for a lounge, we used a lot of stuff we had at home. Picture frames, vases, etc. If it wasn’t from home I bought it in bulk from places like the Dollar Tree. I really wanted our reception to be full of candlelight. However, candles add up! I ended up buying all of my glass taper candlesticks from the Dollar Tree online and it was amazing. They were beautiful and so classy. When it came to vases I was a master at finding those. I had to get creative! I joined all of the local wedding Facebook groups in our area, was always searching on Craigslist, and honestly found them all for a 1/4 of the price. Now let me say, if you’re renting everything then this probably isn’t applicable to you. For us though, we wanted to be able to sell everything back when we were done, and we did! All of the decor we purchased was put up for sale after the wedding and it is FINALLY all gone. For us that was a great way to do things, but it varies for everyone!
Our ceremony decor was very simple and based off of two things. From the time we got engaged I had my mind set on a mantel as our altar. I know, weird! I literally searched and searched until I found a man who did custom woodwork. He made the most beautiful mantel for us, and it was literally exactly what I had envisioned. We got married under big, beautiful, oak trees with hanging lanterns. So the mantel went perfectly with that feel. I kept it simple and did beautiful flowers and garlands on the mantel, with some wooden stumps and beautiful plants. Like I said, I was all about the flowers for my wedding. You have to find what your main focus is, and plan around that. Maybe it’s the flowers, maybe it’s the color of the venue, whatever it is make sure you know what you’re going for. We did simple wooden chairs and lined the aisle with wooden signs with a Bible verse written on each sign. It was very simple yet still romantic and beautiful. One thing I will say is this- for us, Pinterest and wedding websites were overwhelming. Instead of scrolling and scrolling for hours, I would get a few ideas, and then plan around those. Using my own creativity to build on or altar what I had seen on Pinterest. If you get to deep into looking at other peoples weddings, you will begin to try and copy it exactly, even if it’s unknowingly. So, use it as a resource to get your creativity going, and then switch it up by making it more like you and your partner. That tip really helped me throughout the process.
When planning our reception I knew I wanted to highlight the enormous white Chandeliers and the big and beautiful white barn. Our reception was an indoor/outdoor reception, and I really wanted people to feel as if they could still be outside and enjoy the party. I added lawn games from a rental company, and a beautiful lounge outside with some cocktail tables! Our venue had gorgeous white lights hanging from the trees in the courtyard so it helped keep the romantic feeling outside as well. I did mostly round tables and then a long wooden table for the wedding party. I’m so glad we did this, I loved how we could see all of our guests and our backs were not turned on anyone. For centerpieces I knew I wanted each table to be unique and different. Let me preface this by saying, my florist was amazing. I went to school with her and had known her for a few years, and she seriously is the best. I would hire her again in a heart beat. She stuck with my theme of flowing greenery and deep reds and pinks. Our guests complemented our flowers profusely. I have to say, some of the flowers she used were so different and beautiful they looked like they came from an island! I loved how they were not flowers you see all the time, they were special and definitely unique to our big day, which is exactly what we wanted. I gave her free reign on our center pieces and just told her I wanted some flowing on the tables, some in tall vases, etc. I loved how each table was different but they all still went together. One tip for picking a florist- find someone who you know will understand your vision. Maybe you’re like me and don’t necessarily want everything the same, find someone who’s work looks like what you want. Or maybe you want everything uniformed and exact, find someone who does that. I honestly spent the most time finding a florist, and a dress. I really wanted to get it right! Also, don’t be afraid to ask questions. If your florist doesn’t have a website with his or her work, ask to see photos. Seeing past wedding’s or events from your florist will really give you an idea of what types of design they are comfortable with. This goes back to choosing your overall feel and colors, everything revolves around that. Decide your theme! Romantic, shabby chic, classic, elegant- whatever it is, stick with it throughout all your planning, and your decor will all flow together seamlessly. We did not have a wedding planner, so this was all up to me, but I’m a planner by nature so I loved this (most of the time.)
I added small personalized details that were customized for us. Such as cocktail napkins and coozies at the bar. I also placed many personal photos from our Engagement session around the venue, I loved this because it gave the decor a bit of a sentimental feeling. We used large glass mirrors from home to write our dinner menu on, as well as a thank you note to all of our guests, and I loved how it turned out. A lot of people use chalk boards now or wood, however we really loved how classy the glass mirrors looked with our all white venue! Another tip for anyone planning a wedding or party, sign up for coupon emails from all the places you’re planning on purchasing from. Hobby Lobby, Michael’s, Home Goods! These are all great places to find the small things you need for your big day, and having coupons sent to you is just an added bonus. This helped me plan when I was going to purchase certain things based on when different items were on sale!
As far as the rest of our decor goes, it was all stuff that we found at thrift stores or online garage sales. I’m all about finding a good deal, so our wedding was no exception. I added an adorable home made photo booth that was perfect for our venue. I wanted people to have other things to do, and this was a big hit! The giant chess and connect four were also so fun! If you’re planning on having kids at your wedding, I highly recommend getting lawn games. Don’t settle on the first company you find either, spend time researching different companies. Some companies will work out deals with you and are much easier to work with than others! We also had custom corn hole boards made from Etsy and used monogrammed bean bags. Our guests really enjoyed this, as well as our wedding party throughout the day. I will share some more of our photos below so you can see how our decor turned out. If you are getting married and live in the Dallas area and want any of our vendor info, please let me know! If not, have fun looking at the beautiful photos! All of our photos were done by Leah Golter Photography.