To me, there’s nothing more romantic than an impromptu snowfall. Especially when it happens to be amidst a cozy Vermont wedding from Cambria Grace. It’s the kind of wildly special moment that takes this Mountain Top Inn affair from “pretty” to “perfection,” and lucky for us there’s much, much more to pin away right here.
From the Bride… I’ve been dreaming about my wedding since I was a little girl and would prance around in a passed-down chic Spanish wedding dress every moment it wasn’t in the washing machine and practice walking in my Nana’s high heels on the kitchen floor. All that was missing from my fantasy wedding was the groom. That was settled on December 17th, 2011, when Brenden and I met at a mutual friend’s birthday party in a dark, dungy bar in South Boston. Our first date was four days later and I knew something was different and wonderful about this guy right away! Brenden proposed April 17th, 2013, on the front stoop of our brownstone and we celebrated by going to the restaurant where we had our first date. Brenden joked that I had a big, red “send” button that I simply hit and everything for our wedding was executed and done, invitations in the mail, etc… He quickly learned what everyone else already knew- I’d been dreaming about and planning my wedding since I was a little girl.
Brenden and I both grew up in rural towns; Brenden is from Maine and I’m from upstate New York. We wanted to find a venue at a mid-way point where our family and closest friends could come for the weekend, park their car, and be entertained and involved the entire time- preferably with a barn to hold the wedding. We had stayed at The Mountain Top Inn with Brenden’s parents for Christmas the previous year, so we set up a visit and got the official wedding tour and were sold, date set – November 23, 2013! Wedding planning in seven months- here we come!
Goosefish Press (just down the road from us in Boston) designed our invitations and reply cards with custom sketches in Vermont green of the Barn and the Inn and the scenery surrounding it pressed into heavyweight ivory paper. A local Rutland, VT, family-run bakery won our attention with their perfectly golden Boston Crème donuts and their delicious maple buttercream frosting finished with a gum paste maple leaf atop of chocolate cupcakes.
We made a trip to Maine where Brenden and his father cut down a 40-foot birch tree and then created the most beautiful cupcake stand, hollowed out a stump with a mail slot on top for envelope gifts and I burned “A+B” inside a heart, and cut stumps of various heights to surround the area where we’d stand to get married. They also made the most rugged looking signpost with arrowheads that I wrote on labeling the ceremony, cocktails, reception, Boston, and both of our hometowns. A friend of Brenden’s has a blueberry farm where we got 30 pounds of Maine jam blueberries that we painstakingly sorted through to make a 4oz. jar of jam for each guest as their escort card to find their table and also their gift to take home and enjoy. It was a day and a half of hard work!
The local hardware store in my hometown provided the white linens that my sisters and I fancied up by folding and inserting handmade menus on brown kraft paper and putting a handwritten nametag on persimmon paper from The Paper Source with a rustic pinecone. The centerpieces (that doubled to also line the aisle and sit atop the stumps for the ceremony) were rust-colored mums and huckleberry greens inside a galvanized tin pail with a piece of burlap that we glued around it and then finished with a Martha Stewart chalkboard label to note the table number. The tables were finished with white votive candles.
Our colors were rust/orange and shades of gray. Our wedding party was small- two on each side. Brenden, his brother and best friend wore charcoal gray suits, white shirts and rust and gray argyle ties with brown shoes. My sisters wore a graphite chiffon strapless dress with black patent leather pumps, rust pashminas, gold and clear crystal earring studs from Kate Spade, and an assortment of gold and orange bangles from J. Crew. The finishing touches were the orange ranunculus, green hypericum berries and seeded eucalyptus boutonnières wrapped in twine and the orange ranunculus, white stock, green and peach hypericum berries, and seeded eucalyptus gorgeous bouquets wrapped in burlap.
My 92 year-old amazing Nana lent me her ¾ length mink jacket as my something old to stay warm for outside pictures. I wore ivory Kate Spade peep-toe pumps as my something new that were comfortable all night. My dress was something borrowed from a close family friend! I altered it a bit with a local seamstress and felt loved each moment I wore it, as it had been her wedding dress a few years ago! My mom pinned a piece of heirloom jewelry with a blue garnet stone onto my bouquet for something blue.
Throughout the planning process in Boston, I regularly communicated with the on-site coordinator at The Mountain Top Inn, who was wonderful to talk with and made the entire weekend smooth and flawless. My sisters and I put everything together Thursday before the wedding. We stuffed welcome bags (brown kraft paper bags stamped with a vermont green “A+B”) with Poland Springs water (from Maine), Cape Cod potato chips, homemade chocolate chip walnut cookies (I love to bake), Lindt chocolate snowmen, and a Welcome Packet filled with the weekend itinerary and suggested activities. Friday commenced wedding weekend, and it was foggy beyond belief; you couldn’t even clearly see ten feet in front of you. We started with a delicious home-cooked Family Dinner with twenty of our immediate family members and closest friends, followed by a Meet n’ Greet at The Tavern where all of our guests got to meet and hang out with the famous wings from The Mountain Top Inn, an assortment of pizzas, and s’mores out by the fire pit. Saturday morning my cousin led a yoga class and then we got together for breakfast that our families prepared- Brenden with his and I with mine.
Guests went hiking, sledding, and hung out at The Inn while we got ready for our 3:00 ceremony. My younger sister and I had practiced my make-up a few times in Boston, so we were ready for wedding day! All morning it was sunny and clear and beautiful! About an hour before our ceremony, the skies began to cloud over and show signs of the first snow. Two of my closest girlfriends passed out handmade programs (again on brown kraft paper) to guests arriving at our ceremony. Our guitarist played Canon in D on the ukulele as I walked down the aisle with my father. It was the most amazing experience and I will remember it for the rest of my life!
Brenden and I had written our ceremony, and hearing it in the moment and having our friends and family members come up for readings was beyond words! Brenden was leaning in to kiss me the entire ceremony and exclaimed “you’re stuck with me” after we were officially pronounced husband and wife. The moment we went outside to take pictures after our ceremony, the biggest, whitest, most beautiful snowflakes created a blizzard that was picturesque and perfectly set the ambiance for our reception at this beautiful Inn in the middle of the mountains of Vermont. The food was delicious, the band was unbelievable, and our guests were the most fun we could have ever asked for! We had the time of our lives. Everyone was able to get together again on Sunday morning for breakfast before leaving and we reminisced and laughed about our wonderful wedding weekend.
Everything I had dreamed about for my wedding day came true! The excitement I had since I was a little girl was real. And the best part- this great guy chose me to spend his life with. Love it a pretty wonderful thing!
Photography: Cambria Grace Photography | Wedding Dress: Pass Down From Family Friend | Floral Design: Park Place Florist And Garden Center | Florist: Park Place Florist And Garden Center | Invitations: Goosefish Press | Bride's Shoes: Kate Spade | Bridesmaids' Dresses: J.Crew | Hair: Michele Hathorn | Band: House On Fire | Alterations: Bridal Alterations By Hranush | Bridesmaids' Jewelry: Kate Spade | Bridesmaids' Pumps: Ann Taylor | Cupcakes And Boston Creme Donuts: Dellveneri Bakery | Guitarist: Dayve Huckett | Justice Of The Peace: Kathy Hall | Linens: Tremont’s ACE Hardware | Venue + Catering: Mountain Top Inn