Lindsey and Patrick were married at the Garden of the Gods in Colorado Springs, Colo. on June 26. “The Garden of the Gods was a special place for us because that was where we had our first real date,” Lindsey said. “We felt a deep connection there and knew that we were going to be together forever.” The bride wore a strapless satin trumpet wedding gown, accessorized with her hair in a braid and a pair of Doc Martens boots, while the groom wore a black suit, accessorized with solid tie. Her bouquet featured roses, ranunculuses, succulents, and ivy vines. “We also love the the mountains, so the view was just perfect during the ceremony,” she said. “We had each written our vows the night before. Hearing them with no one but each other to look at was so romantic.” And teary-eyed! In lieu of a reception, they had a picnic. “The picnic I made for the two of us was also a favorite of ours,” Lindsey said. “I made the sandwiches and fruit salad myself. It was nice to sit on the quilt my grandmother and mother made for us and just take in the moment while having a meal together. The dessert? Donuts. “I also loved that even though we were eloping, we still dressed like it was a formal event,” she said. “My dress made me feel like a beautiful bride, which is how you are supposed to feel on your big day!” The newlyweds’ best advice? “Make it all about you,” Lindsey said. “People get so swept up in the planning and all the little details that they forget what it is all really about, expressing your love for one another.”
Amber and Robby were married in a traditional church ceremony at St. Mary Star of the Sea followed by a reception at The Sunset Room in Ocean City, Md. on June 28. “We watched the sunset one night from the deck, and it was incredible,” Amber said. “We knew right then and there that it was the one.” The bride wore a strapless satin a-line wedding gown, accessorized with her hair half-up/half-down in loose curls and a pair of jelly flats, while the groom wore a tan three-piece suit, accessorized with a striped tie. Bridesmaids wore short mint chiffon dresses and carried bouquets of (surprise) tulips, baby’s breath, and ferns. “When I walked down the aisle and saw my emotional groom and all of our guests so genuinely happy to be there, it was the most calm I had felt all day,” she said. Following the exchanging of vows and rings, it was official! The now husband and wife duo took off to the sandy beach to take some portraits, one in particular on the lifeguard stand. How fun! Guests were assigned seats according to streets — ranging from 1st to 142nd street along Coastal Highway. Tables were decorated with mason jar centerpieces, seashells, and starfishes. “When our DJ announced the last song, everyone came out on the dance floor and made a big circle to dance together,” Amber said. “When the song was over, our guests bombarded us with hugs. It felt as if they were just as happy as we were in that moment. It was unforgettable and could not have been planned if we tried.” The newlyweds’ best advice? “The point of your wedding day is to marry the person you love,” she said. “The journey getting there is half the fun and should be enjoyable for anyone involved. If you become stressed, which you will, just take a step back and realize what it’s all about.”
Alyssa and Andrew were married in a traditional church ceremony at Cascade Christian followed by a reception at the Bissell Tree House at the John Ball Zoo in Grand Rapids, Mich. on September 14. “I picked the Bissell Tree House mostly because it was brand new,” Alyssa said. “When I booked it, there had never been an event in the building. I actually didn’t even get a tour of the inside before I booked it because I LOVED the view of downtown Grand Rapids from the tree tops. I also couldn’t resist the rustic yet industrial look of the outside. The finicular that all the guests had to take to get to the tree house was pretty neat too.” The bride wore a lace fit ‘n’ flare wedding gown with an illusion bateau neckline, accessorized with a white sash, while the groom wore a light gray suit, accessorized with a black button-up shirt and tie. Bridesmaids wore short purple dresses and carried bouquets of green tricks, succulents, scabiosa pods, and fern curls. “My flowers were my absolute favorite detail,” she said. “I love plants and our florist did a fantastic job with all the bouquets, centerpieces, and boutonnieres. She went above and beyond with everything.” During the ceremony, the officiant said a prayer. “It made me realize how blessed I was able to marry Andrew and spend the rest of my life with him,” Alyssa said. “It brought me to sobbing tears, and I don’t think I will ever forget it.” Guests were escorted to their seats via cards atop branches, tables were decorated with birch centerpieces atop wooden slices and burlap numbers, and succulent favors were given out to let love grow. “My favors were another favorite,” she said. “This was a do-it-yourself project. My mom and I grew the succulents all year long and then planted them in mini jelly jars.” The newlyweds’ best advice? “Let people help you with the planning and projects,” Alyssa said. “And mostly enjoy your day because it goes by so fast. I know people always say that, but I didn’t realize how fast it would actually go by.”
Megan and Dino were married at Billingsley House Museum in Upper Marlboro, Md. on July 5. “We absolutely loved that it was outdoors with a stunning view of the Patuxent and Potomac River Corridor,” Megan said. “The trees, water, and house created a beautiful backdrop for our photos. Plus, our guests were free to move about the property.” The bride wore a halter a-line wedding gown with beaded embellishments on the corset bodice, accessorized with a pair of silvers strappy high heels, while the groom wore a gray three-piece suit, accessorized with a solid bow tie. Bridesmaids wore navy blue dresses in various necklines and hemlines and carried bright bouquets of orange roses and purple bells. “Our four-year-old Pomeranian was able to be apart of our ceremony and reception,” she said. “From her face on the table numbers and our donations to ASPCA in lieu of favors.” Megan’s favorite moment? “See Dino’s face as I was walking down the aisle.” Following the nuptials, cocktail hour began with their signature drink – peach sangria – and striped straws. Tables were decorated with do-it-yourself martini glass centerpieces filled with gems atop silver platters. “The one piece of advice I would offer is to not over think things,” Megan said. “I quickly began to have ideas and wanted to add this and that, but my groom reminded me not to overwhelm myself or our guests. Simply to keep things simple, and when I listened to him, it all came together great. I could not have ask for a better day.” There even was a dessert display complete with Hershey’s kisses, butter mints, Russell Stowe’s chocolates, and lollipops.
Rachel and Garry were married at The Japanese Garden followed by an outdoor backyard reception in Van Nuys, Calif. on June 7. “The moment you step foot into the Japanese Gardens, you are surrounded by peace and serenity,” Rachel said. ”Any stress, any worry seizes to exist while you are there. You can’t help but admire the beauty. “ The bride stunned in a v-neck halter wedding gown, accessorized with a fingertip-length veil and sparkly peep-toe pumps, while the groom wore a gray suit, accessorized with no tie. Bridesmaids wore short coral chiffon dresses and carried bouquets of peonies, roses, and dahlias. All 80 guests sat at round tables in padded folding chairs, decorated with sandalwood linens, white napkins, floating candle centerpieces, and a personalized thank-you note at each place setting. ”Garry and I took a moment to reflect and kind of stepped back and looked around at all of our friends and family,” she said. “To see their smiling faces, laughing and dancing – so much love was everywhere. It was truly humbling, and our hearts were bursting.” An indulging dessert display included a buttercream-frosted cake, oatmeal cream pies, Ho Hos, and chocolate covered marshmallows. Lucky them! The newlyweds jetted off in a 1961 Bentley at the end of the night for a touch of old Hollywood glamour. “If at the end of the day, you marry the love of your life, the rest doesn’t matter,” Rachel said.