Whenever a bride admits to completely geeking out over Style Me Pretty during the wedding planning process, we sort of feel like instant best friends. But when that same bride sends along her stunning lakeside nuptials, planned in true SMP style? Well, we have no choice but to hold the phones, stop and swoon. Kate Preftakes captured every detail, and there’s much more waiting over here!
From Kate Preftakes Photography… Everything about Danielle and Derrick’s wedding day sparkled. From the touches of glitter on her details; to her grandmother’s crystals on the bouquet; to the beautiful connection between this perfect couple; there was an all around lovely glow to this wedding. Danielle was positively radiant from beginning to end on her wedding day. She was bursting with excitement to be marrying Derrick, but also completely calm and laid back about the little things. She made getting married seem effortless. Also, I’m just going to go ahead and say it, she’s drop dead gorgeous! And so much of that beauty comes shining through from the inside.
Danielle and Derrick were married at Church Landing at Mills Falls in Meredith, NH. There was on and off rain for most of the day but that didn’t dampen anyone’s spirits and we were still able to get out on the docks for some great pictures! Both families have summer homes in Meredith and Danielle grew up spending her summers here. It was a very special place for them to get married. Missy and Fiona are the couple’s babies (mother and daughter toy poodles) and they were dressed for the occasion.
From the Bride… Derrick and I have a seasonal camp in Meredith, New Hampshire, where we spend our weekends in the summer and which we literally count down the days until we can open all winter long. It is a place we can go to get away from tv and internet and spend quality time with each other, our dogs, and our family. After we got engaged in December, we began looking at venues in Massachusetts and New Hampshire trying to find the one that was right for us. We spent a long weekend driving around visiting venues and came to the conclusion that we really wanted a “mini” destination wedding and there could be nothing better than having our friends and family spend a weekend celebrating with us and experiencing the beauty of our favorite place in the world.
We both really wanted our wedding to be personalized and so as soon as the venue was chosen, we got down to work. Derrick and I designed and printed our Save the Dates; my mom and I sewed what felt like a million feet of table runners; Derrick’s mom made all of our centerpieces and my mom’s best friend, Jane MacDonald, made the bouquets; my brother made the favors; my dad, my brother and I spent a night in my dad’s workshop making our table numbers and escort card displays; my mom made my garter; I painted the bottoms of my shoes as my “something blue”; we punched out hundreds of sparkly hearts to attach to everything from invitations to paper straws, and the list goes on and on…and on. Our house was overrun with glitter, tulle and birch trees for about 9 months, but we had a lot of laughs and made so many wonderful memories before the wedding day even began.
The most special project was one that every one of our guests had a hand in creating–our wedding quilt. My mom and I chose all of the fabrics and cut the squares which of our guests signed during cocktail hour in lieu of a guestbook. Friends and family gave advice, drew pictures, and wrote heartwarming messages which my mom and I are now assembling into a quilt that Derrick and I will be able to look at every day and remember everyone who was there to share our special day with us.
Seeing all of the details of our labor of love come together on our wedding day was magical. When our wedding coordinator snuck us into the ballroom for a sneak peak before the reception, I couldn’t believe how beautiful it was and that my candlelit, glittery, rustic dreams had come to fruition.
Our wedding day was truly the best day of my life. We really tried not to worry about the “right way” to do things and incorporated some of our favorite things including freshly baked apple cider donuts in our welcome bags and a lobster corn chowder station at cocktail hour. We decided to forego a wedding cake and have an ice cream sundae buffet instead. Our dogs walked down the aisle in tutus! We went back and forth on whether to do a first look photo and finally decided to do something traditional and wait to see each other until the ceremony and even though I cried the whole way down the aisle, seeing Derrick waiting for me, standing in front of all of our friends and family, was completely overwhelming and a moment that I will never forget.
My biggest piece of advice for brides-to-be is to choose vendors not only whose work you love who you like working with! We were lucky to find the most fabulous photographer, Kate Preftakes, through Style Me Pretty after looking at tons of featured weddings and I adored her from the first time we spoke on the phone. Derrick actually told me that I couldn’t just choose her because I wanted to hang out with her, but once he saw her work agreed that she was the right choice. And for me it was important that I wanted to spend the day with her because I would be on my wedding day! We interviewed many DJs trying to find one who wasn’t cheesy and over the top and finally found Carlos Russin who was great to work with and kept our guests on the dance floor all night.
Finally, Church Landing’s wedding coordinator was really what sold us on the venue (in addition to the gorgeous grounds, beautiful ballroom, and awesome food) as we knew as soon as we met her that we wouldn’t need to worry about a thing on the day of. Following the wedding, I must’ve said to Derrick a thousand times that I thought it was the most perfect day ever. He tells me that every bride says that and I hope that is true!