Holly & Grant | May 17th | Boulder, Colorado
From the bride:
Our wedding was a combination of a cocktail party and a garden party – casual and fun. Neither Grant nor I are big party people – we just wanted an environment where we could mingle and enjoy the presence of all our friends and family.
We got married on my parent’s property in Boulder, under an arch that my father built. We had a classical guitarist play as we entered. There were no bridesmaids or groomsmen. The ceremony was short and sweet. Grant and I wrote it together and we heard throughout the rest of the day that it sounded just like us.
We had a large (40×60) tent in the yard with lights. The reception was mostly a chance to mingle and chat with people – and enjoy the good food and good wine and beer. We had local brews (selected by Grant) and wine options from California and New Zealand (selected by my dad).
We had lights strung across the tent and beautiful flowers on the tables. We did splurge for the ‘harvest tables’ which added a little bit of rustic charm to the decor. I really just wanted to flowers to be the focus of the day, and they were.
Neither Grant nor I are dancers, but there was something about our first dance. You hear about everyone else disappearing and having it just be the two of you – that happened to me while we danced – I loved it.
First, you hear all the time that you won’t remember your wedding day – that you will not be aware of the details you stressed over…and that was certainly true for me. So keep that in mind as you think about which napkin color to get.
Second, unless you are planning a tiny event or have years to plan, I would get a planner. Even if you think you can handle it, having someone to help with narrowing selections for vendors, who could do the leg work when it came to nailing down a contract or getting an update from a vendor was so wonderful. It allowed me to continue to work and have a life while I planned the wedding.
Third, really REALLY plan your guest list – make a list, have your fiancé make a list, go over the lists together, set them aside and go over them again later. Really think about how many people you want at your day. Grant and I ended up with about twice what we wanted (it turned out okay) but it was definitely the biggest stressor of the entire planning.
Lastly, try to enjoy the process. It will get stressful, but try to remember that at the end of the day, you will be married to the person you love – and the entire day is all about that.
Holly’s RECOMMENDED VENDORS
Event Planner: The Wedding Studio (HIGHLY recommend her!). Hope listened to what I wanted and brought me options. She was always willing to make changes and adjustments. She was available when I needed her and basically saved my sanity through the whole process. I cannot recommend her highly enough.
Florist: The Perfect Petal. My floral designer was brilliant. The nature of what we wanted (mostly little containers of different sizes with individual flowers or small arrangements) necessitated intensive set-up on site. The layout was amazing – saturated colors through the tent, but not overwhelming or fussy. She also made us flower arrangements for the cake and the arch (for the ceremony). She listened to input and made changes. I would work with her again, no question.
Caterer: Footers Catering. Footers was amazing – our food station idea was a little bit different, but they worked with us to get a menu we all liked. They made changes to recipes and tweaked flavors for us. Their staff was incredible – friendly and helpful – throughout the evening. And the food was incredible! My only regret was that I didn’t get to eat more of it!
Riley & Raphael | August 30th | Montrose, Colorado
From the bride: My wedding day was filled with joy and excitement. I have not had that much of an adrenaline rush through me since the births of my children. It was an amazing feeling, and so amazing to finally be marrying the love of my life! I wish all the time that I could go back and relive that day because it flew by. I had a friend give me the advice to really try and stop and take it in as much as you can because before you know it will all be over. Boy, that’s the truth.
Kelli & John | June 8th | Boulder, Colorado
From the bride:
I had decided early on in the wedding planning process that I wanted the day of the wedding to be as stress free as possible. It was so comfortable to have our wedding at my parent’s house, and we didn’t have to worry about transporting things from place to place, or making any appointments. I was very relaxed all day, and was able to enjoy every moment.
John and I did a “first look”, which proved to be one of the most special times of the day. It’s weird that on your wedding day, you don’t actually have any time alone with your groom. We took this time to just be together.
My favorite detail was the lawn games. I always pictured our guests enjoying some of our favorite games during cocktail hour. John and I got to partake in some corn hole…I’m pretty sure we won!
The centerpieces on the long tables included bud vases with peonies and garden roses, and lanterns. We had lights strung all over the yard, in the trees, and inside the tent. There just happened to be a beautiful sunset over the Boulder Flatirons, which also added to the décor.
It was John’s idea for us to take “time outs” during the reception to soak it all in. Several times during the party, we both took a moment to look around and realize how blessed we were. Those moments are some of the ones that we treasure most.
Kelli & John’s
Event Planner: A Touch of Bliss. Becky and Sarah were amazing!! They work so well together and they worked so hard to make everything come together and on budget. They had wonderful ideas through out the whole process. We really could not have thrown our wedding with out them. They worked so hard the day of the wedding. They were the first to arrive and the last to leave, and took care of everything from setting up, to running to the store when we ran out of ice, to just making sure the day ran smoothly.
Photographer: Yellow Feather Photography. Beth did an incredible job photographing our wedding. She captured every moment, and her photos really tell the story of our entire day. Not only is she an amazing photographer, she is a joy to work with. She is laid back and reminds you that the day is about you and your groom, and to enjoy it.
Flowers: Somerset Floral Design. Liz did an incredible job with our flowers. I had a vision of peonies, and Liz came up with the perfect bouquets and boutonnieres. She also designed the arch for the ceremony. She was amazing to work with and really helped guide the design of the whole wedding.
DJ: Rock Candy DJ. Johnny did a great job keeping the flow of cocktail hour and dinner. He really shined with the dancing though. He was able to read the crowd and keep the party going all night. He was great with requests and overall did a wonderful job.
Caterer: Abrusci’s Italian Restaurant. Annie was great to work with, and she was able to create a menu of Italian food that we loved! Her team was amazing as well. They worked so hard the day of the wedding, and they really went above and beyond to make sure that everything ran smoothly.
From the bride, Katie:
It was the perfect day! I got to marry my best friend and hang out with all the people who mean the world to me. We danced the night away and had a blast.
We got married outside on the lawn next to the river on a beautiful day! There were trees and mountains all around us.
My Mom made all the burlap table runners and signs as well as wildflower seed thank you gifts.
My advice: Enjoy the feeling of being engaged! Remember that if at the end of the day you are married then it was a good day!
Katie’s RECOMMENDED VENDORS
Venue: Trout River Ranch. I would highly recommend them! Not only did we rent the property, but we also rented the house for the night before and night of. It was great to be able to get ready on site and then not have to drive anywhere after the event. Denny and Jan were wonderful to work with.
Photographer: Rebecca Ellison Photography. Becca is the best! She has a great personality and works with you to make sure she captures the moments you want and then some. Everyone who attended the wedding complemented on how wonderful she was! She fit in well with the group and seemed to be at all the right spots to capture memorable moments. I highly recommend Becca she is so talented and professional, she made the day easy!
Tent & Rentals: Park Avenue Parties. Celeste was so wonderful to work with! She helped to get the tents, tables, and dance floor layed. Park Avenue had everything we needed to make a great party! They were on time with their setup and tear down. They worked with us on last minute changes and I never had to worry about a thing!
Cake: Butch’s Café Take the Cake. Kim was easy to work with and makes delicious cakes! We had a white cake with raspberry filling, a chocolate cake with chocolate filling, and red velvet.
Florist: Alpine Floral. They were very helpful on picking the right combinations and did a great job on all of the flowers. They listened to what we wanted and delivered just that! I highly recommend them!
Transportation: Telluride Express. Since the venue was outside of town we provided a shuttle for the guests. Laurie was great to work with; she has a lot of experience and helped us make sure everyone was picked up on time. The driver was very professional and nice!
Jessie & Doug | June 1st | Haxtun, Colorado
From the bride, Jessie:
When I originally started dreaming about our wedding, I just knew it HAD to be on my grandparents’ farm. They have a Quonset building that I pictured being the perfect setting. But, how do you make a Quonset look like a wedding reception? That seemed to be the question, and my honest answer is—with the help of family and friends. There is NO way we could have pulled this off on our own. From tables and chairs, to a tent, to decorations, to the fact that the entire building had only a couple outlets….we enlisted the help of many. And, the end result was something that far surpassed our original vision. It was beautiful and very much US.
I loved each and every handmade detail. I loved the time we spent together, creating and making each one. Even though, it may be stressful to DIY, it was worth it for the memories made while doing so.
One thing I really wanted to do was a cookies and milk toast for the kids (I am a preschool teacher), so in the week before the wedding I baked 8 dozen cookies to pair with the milk in champagne flutes.
My advice: Make your wedding not only about you, but those who love and support you as well. Prioritize what’s most important when you envision your wedding day, and know that you may have to let some things go. And, no matter how much time you have to plan for your wedding, don’t fool yourself into thinking you have “plenty” of time. Get done what you can get done as SOON as you can get it done! And, then enjoy and take in as much of your day as you can.
Jessica’s RECOMMENDED VENDORS
Photographer: Kiersta Rhodes Photography, Kiersta is simply amazing. Her eye for detail, and her passion for photography make her the perfect photographer. She really gets to know her clients on a more personal level, which makes it a much more intimate experience. DJ: Unique Audio // Florist: A Country Touch
Honeymoon Location: Our honeymoon was in Negril, Jamaica at the Couples Resort, which Doug managed to keep a secret from me until the day after our wedding. We had a great time, and it was so beautiful there.
Nicole & Matt | June 15th | Littleton, Colorado
From the bride, Nicole:
Almost everything for our wedding was homemade. I liked the idea of cowboy boots, wood decorations and candles. Then I just put them all together and some how it all looked great!
I loved our welcome doors. It was fun to see them opened and closed for my walk down the aisle. I felt like I was entering an outdoor church.
At the beginning of the aisle we had whiskey barrels with baby’s breath and a sign saying “our story begins here”. In addition, we had along each side of the aisle, pictures of us growing up then at the end a picture of us together.
We stood beneath a gazebo my dad built out of my old wood playset.
My advice: Enjoy every minute at your wedding, it goes by fast!
Nicole’s RECOMMENDED VENDORS
Photographer: Rayna McGinnis Photography // Caterer: Granny Ma’s // DJ: Elite DJ // Tent & Rentals: Butler Rents // Hair & Makeup: Spa Divas Mobile Spa & Salon // Transportation: 303 Limos