Topsfield Commons Wedding by Kate Preftakes Photography
April 30, 2012
New England
DIY InspiredClassic Weddings

It all started with a chance meeting in London between two seriously adorable ballroom dancers. Dance partners first, bride and groom-to-be next... if that isn't the beginning of the world's greatest romance, then I don't know what is.  And this darling duo's love story doesn't end there.  Nope, they they tied the knot in grand MA fashion, with a bundle of DIY details and a classic meets vintage vibe that is all kinds of fabulous.  Kate Preftakes Photography captured all of the lovely and believe me when I tell you, it's one you won't soon forget.  See it all here.

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From the Bride... Brad and I met in London in 2007 on a university ballroom dancing team. He's a scientist from New Hampshire working here; I took a year off my work in journalism in Hong Kong to study for my master's degree in London. Well, that "year off" turned out to have changed my life. We met, went out dancing, became dance partners, and in 2010, we decided we will be partners in life as well! As soon as we got engaged, people started asking us where the wedding would take place, and we would joke it's a project that spans three continents. As it turned out, we had two "weddings," one in New England and another Chinese celebration in Hong Kong, so that we could include as many of our families, friends and traditions as possible. We also had a mini party in London for our friends.

Planning the wedding long-distance was difficult but not impossible. For our US event, the priorities were to keep it small, personal and fuss-free. Budget was also an issue (remember — two weddings!), so I did a lot of DIY, including all the stationery and centerpieces. I spent many, many hours on the internet researching venues, resources and vendors, and on his Christmas break in New Hampshire, Brad and his mom looked around at some venues I shortlisted, eventually choosing Topsfield Commons. It's not too far from Boston for our international guests, comes with a garden, and most importantly for us, has a beautiful ballroom for dancing!

As for the details of the wedding itself, we both have what you can call "classic" taste (we love a foxtrot to Sinatra), and I envisioned a summer garden ceremony, so I picked a soft dusty rose (my favourite shade) and a muted sage (Brad loves green) as our theme colours. I painted a couple flowering branch motifs with watercolors, scanned them and used them for our DIY invites and ceremony booklets. My bridesmaids lived in different places, and I didn't want them to have to coordinate their dresses, so I emailed them a colour chart and told them to pick a blush pink dress of their choice — I loved the result. On a holiday in Italy, we discovered some silk ties that exactly matched our green and picked those up for the groomsmen. Brad didn't tell me he was having a suit made and surprised me on the day when he showed me that his suit and waistcoat were also lined in pink and green! When the day came, the heavens decided to open up for a brief thunderstorm right at the time of our scheduled ceremony, so we had to move indoors. That's one of our only regrets about the day — but you can't control the weather, and it'll be something for us to talk about in the years to come. We are just really thankful we had such a memorable day surrounded by family and friends.

Wedding Photography: Kate Preftakes Photography / Wedding Venue: The Topsfield Commons 1854 in Topsfield, Massachusetts / Bouquets: Kelly Harris / Floral Centerpieces: DIY with Flowers via Fifty Flowers / Wedding Cake: Frederick's Pastries / Wedding Stationery: DIY / DJ: Move it Music DJ & Lighting / Wedding Dress: Johanna Hehir