It is only fitting that the most important day in the lives of you and your love be a true labor of love, no? A family working together to cut, sew, and glue together a wedding from scratch can warm my heart on the coldest of cold days, which is why I capital LOVE this Ohio wedding. Tracy Doyle Photography captured a day filled with so much love – and so many lovely projects – that will live beautifully forever in our gallery!

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My husband and I were high school sweethearts, and had been dating for 6 years. When he proposed to me in November we knew we wanted a short engagement, and knew we had a lot of planning to do in a short amount of time. However, we were both heavily involved in school, so our time was limited. Right away we employed family members to help us with the wedding, especially since my family is very crafty. We hired my sister, an art major, to help make a lot of the decorations and also wedding planning. We involved my mom in making the groomsmen’s ties and in making my going away dress.

I knew I wanted our wedding to be laid back, but still chic at the same time. We made sure our wedding reflected what we wanted as a couple. We wanted our wedding and venue to be vintage rustic chic, so when we stumbled upon our venue that had an 1800′s barn with exposed beams and antique lanterns, we knew that it was the place for our reception. Our handmade style lent well to the overall feel of the barn. Plus, making everything ourselves was a really good way of putting our own personal feel to the barn, and it also helped us stay on budget! 

We also kept within the budget by borrowing from others, doing a lot of research, and bargain shopping online. As soon as we got engaged I started collecting mason jars from antique stores, flea markets, and borrowed from friends. We found vintage lace online to wrap around a lot of the jars, and the rest were wrapped in jute rope to add variety. One of my favorite decoration ideas was our place cards for the seating arrangements. My husband and I tied paper lace die cut outs with yellow and grey yarn to the rim of every guests mason jar cup and labeled them with their name. The table numbers were made for about a $1.50 a piece. The frames were purchase in bulk from Ikea, and the papers fans were hand made from scrap paper we had left from the fan mural that was behind the head table. Many weddings now are using burlap and it’s great for the price. We put white burlap in the frames and cut out numbers from yellow paper. They didn’t look like cheap projects when they were finished, but that just goes to show if you do your research and you’re determined enough you can make an Ikea picture frame look chic!

Since we didn’t want flowers other than the bouquets and boutonnieres, there was only a small amount of our budget dedicated. We found a florist in the area that would order all of the flowers for the bouquets and boutonnieres, and would waived a big labor fee if you came in and assembled everything yourselves. So that’s what we did. We showed up to the flower retailer the day before the wedding and put together all of the bridesmaid’s bouquets, family corsages, and the men’s boutonnieres. I also was very picky about the bridesmaids, and groomsmen’s outfits. I wanted something that everyone would be comfortable in, and would want to wear again. We decided on just simple sundresses for the girls, and nice suit pants and dress shirts for the guys with suspenders.

When deciding how we would leave the reception, I thought it would be fun to have noise instead of sparklers or ribbon dancers. A lot of our inspiration came from vintage ideas, so we decided to use replicas of old vintage metal noisemakers. However, we didn’t realize how loud it would be! There was a deafening sound of people waving noisemakers, and blowing on kazoos. It was definitely one of my favorite moments, because it was a testament to how many supportive friends and family we had all the way to the end.

Many people have asked how we were able to have a do it yourself wedding and get everything done in the amount of time we had. I always say it’s because we started super early, had a supportive family, and there were lots of craft parties with snacks!

Wedding Photography: Tracy Doyle Photography / Wedding Ceremony and Reception: Polen Farms / Catering: Cardinal Catering / Florist: The Flowerman / Cake and Cupcakes: Cake, Hope, and Love / Dress: Galina Signature / Grooms Suit: J.Crew / Shoes: Nina / Bridesmaid Dresses: Anthropologie

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