You know what seeps through the seams of each and every image by Jon Duenas Photography of this darling DIY affair? Love. So much of it. The love this couple has for each other and the obvious love that went into each precious detail. It’s enough to make my sappy heart sing, and it obviously makes for one full gallery that you simply must cozy up with…and you can do so right here.

From the Bride… A lot of LOVE went into our wedding day! By love, I mean that our entire family and close friends helped make our wedding day even that much more special for us. I was blessed to have my mother help me plan the wedding, as well as the reception. This really helped a lot because I had a very specific theme I was shooting for, which I referred to as “vintage picnic,” and no one understands my style quite like my mother does. Most of our decor consisted of antiques collected over the years by my grandparents, parents and me. My grandfather, who passed away in December 2010 from a battle with cancer, was quite the collector. He still holds a special place in my heart, so having items that he collected over his lifetime and that I grew up around made it feel like a piece of him was there sharing every moment with me. My other grandfather, as well as Jeremy’s father, built the altar for the ceremony. This helped us “dress up” and add a little more “oomph” to the field where the ceremony took place. Jeremy and I are very blessed to have ordained pastors as fathers. My father led the wedding message, and Jeremy’s father led the unity braid. A close friend of my mother’s allowed us to borrow all of her dishware, tablecloths, napkins, and silverware for the reception. Because we had a vintage theme, these details were very important to the reception decor.

Even though there were many moments throughout the day that were very special, my all-time favorite moment had to be when I sang to Jeremy, which was after I shared my vows. He had no idea I was going to sing to him, especially since I have an awful case of stage fright! However, what he did not know was that I had been preparing myself for that moment my entire life. And, honestly, I could not have found a better person to finally complete that favorite moment for me. Also, Jeremy and I chose to sit alone at the reception during the meal. This allowed us to be away from everyone and just reflect a little about the day. It only lasted about 10 minutes, but it was nice to finally have some time to ourselves. So if you have that option, I highly recommend it! Also, no matter what, stay true to yourself! Your wedding day is an opportune time for you and your love to share special pieces of yourselves. Take the day and make it your own! :)

From the Groom… A lot of our decorations and details were made or provided by our families and close friends of our families, which made the reception and ceremony both extra special to us and allowed everyone to be a little more involved in our wedding day. The ceremony was wonderful. Both our fathers are pastors, which allowed them to both participate in our ceremony. And another special moment during the ceremony was when we played a recording of Riann’s grandfather, who passed away, singing the Lord’s Prayer which he sang at Riann’s parents’ wedding. The reception was amazing; it was decorated just like Riann and I wanted and was one of my favorite parts of the entire day, mainly because Riann and I were finally husband and wife! It’s very hard to pinpoint THE best moment of the entire day because it was all amazing, but if I had to choose something, it would be the first look. At that moment, I finely got to see Riann in her wedding dress, and we got to spend time with each other before the wedding, allowing us to calm our nerves and relax for a few moments before the rest of the day got busy. She looked so beautiful, and I’ll never forget it!

Wedding Photography: Jon Duenas Photography / Wedding Venue: Logan Street Baptist Church in Mt. Vernon, Illinois / Event Design, Planning, Food, Favors + Music: DIY with Help from Family & Friends / Floral Design: Mikah Watts / Wedding Cinematography: Wonder Lit Photography + Pancho3 Studios / Wedding Dress: Vera Wang / Shoes: TOMS / Bride’s Perfume: Happ & Stahns 1842 Rosa Alba via Anthropologie / Pearl Necklace: From Her Mother + Grandmother / Bride’s Birthstone Ring: Her Grandmother / Hair + Makeup: The Style Shop / Photo Lab: Pro Photo Irvine