Colorful Farm Wedding in Portland, Oregon
December 4, 2014
Northwest
RusticRustic WeddingsSummer Weddings
Full of color and love, this Oregon beauty captured by Ann-Kathrin Koch is the cats meow. Honestly, it's kind of everything that makes me squeal when I open up a submission - beautiful hues, creative details (hello camera bar), and two people so in love they just can't stand it. It's pure wedding magic, and you can get lost in all the lovely right here.
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From Ann-Kathrin Koch...Whitney and Dave. Dave and Whitney. The Tuttles. Tutney. What can I tell you about these two? Maybe how they met, it’s a pretty good story and luckily for me (and you) already recorded on their own blog. It involves a horse called Flickr and a whole lot of Polaroids, which incidentally is also two of the words I would use to describe Whitney and Dave and how I got to know them. Find out more about that here: http://www.hisampersandhers.com/2012/05/engaged.html And here: http://blog.flickr.net/en/2014/02/14/whitney-david-a-flickr-love-story/

It was June 2012 when I got an email from them titled “Here’s my number, call me maybe”. I completely blame the two of them for my irrational love of this song because what came next was the following: “And THIS might be crazy, but what are you doing next year? Specifically around July 27th 2013? See, this is the day that we have decided is going to be the big day, and if you are not too busy, we were thinking that… you know… uhm, maybe you.. .you could uh… be our wedding photographer?” And that’s how it started.

A year later I was on a plane heading to the Pacific Northwest and just a few days later found myself driving up to Fern Hill Farm on a sunny Friday evening, about to attend Whitney and Dave’s rehearsal dinner. Turns out that flying me from England to America for their wedding was not a crazy idea at all.

From The Bride...Dave and I were married last summer on my parents’ farm just outside of Portland, OR. Having over a year to plan our wedding allowed us to really focus on all the details of our day. We wanted to not only celebrate our commitment to one another, but to also celebrate all of our friends and family who had helped us get to this point in our lives. Dave and I met on the photography website Flickr over our mutual love of polaroids, so we knew from the get go that we wanted our wedding to be a visual feast for the eyes. My brother acted as our wedding officiant, we wrote our own vows, had countless DIY touches and there were lots of polaroids (including a camera bar!).

Music...The bridal party walked down to the Vitamin String Quartet version of “Sweet Child ‘O Mine.” Recessional: Vitamin String Quartet version of “All You Need is Love” Processional: Signed, Sealed, Delivered by Steve Wonder (complete with confetti cannons shot by bridal party and guests). First dance: Come Rain or Come Shine by Ray Charles.

Whitney’s favorite memory of the day...The anticipation of our first look. We chose a spot in the woods behind my parents’ house. As I walked down the trail to Dave, I could see his shoulders moving up and down and I knew he was crying. This of course made me start to cry. Being able to have a quiet moment for just the two of us before our ceremony really relaxed me and helped calm any nerves I was having. It was a really special moment.

Dave’s favorite memory of the day...To be honest, the whole day was an absolute blur. You spend countless days, weeks, months planning this event and before you know it, it is all over in what feels like a matter of minutes. I think that my favorite memory of the day ultimately was just the overwhelming sense of fun that the day brought. It was just so much fun. From the backdrop we created, to the amazing ceremony that left everybody in stitches, to the music and dancing that lasted late into the night. We had so much fun and I really think that you can see it in our guests’ faces.

Whitney’s advice is get your hair and make-up done first. People might suggest you go last, but don’t listen to them. You want ample time to take photographs before your ceremony and things are bound to take longer than expected. At the end of the day, your photographs are what you have to remember your wedding by. We ran an hour late getting ready and I ended up going last. It really cut into our photography time.

Dave’s advice is if you ask people what they most remember from a wedding they attend, they are likely to say “the food, the drinks and the dancing.” Sorry ceremony, but everyone is ultimately there to party. (Except your mom, your mom is totally going to soak up the sappy sh*t.) You are there to get married and your friends are there to celebrate. We were lucky enough to have our wedding out in the country so there were no less rules on how late/loud the music could be, whether we could furnish our own booze once the caterers left, etc. Our DJ (the best DJ in Oregon by far) loved that aspect and didn’t stop the music until late at night when we were all just dead tired from dancing and partying all night. My advice is that while you and your fiancée are certainly there to commit yourselves to each other for the rest of your lives, you must remember that it is ultimately a celebration of your union. It is fun being married, it should be fun getting married.

DIY projects we did include:

My parents built the pergola in the backyard and then my folks, Dave, brother and I spent a weekend running wire to the house and securing the garden lights to it.

Ribbon backdrop...We created our ribbon backdrop with a birch branch cut from a tree in my parents’ yard. We secured a dowel rod to the back of the branch with hooks and then tied the ribbons to the rod so that the branch would still be visible. We purchased the fancier ribbons on sale at Michael’s and then filled the backdrop in with cheaper ribbon we bought in bulk at Costco. The ribbons were secured at the bottom with a metal rod so that they didn’t blow in the wind.

Signage...We raided my parents’ barn for wood scraps and then Dave cut them down to appropriate sizes and secured stakes to them. I created a homemade stain using a concoction of steel wool, coffee grounds, rusty nails and vinegar and painted that on the boards. The signs were all then hand painted by my friend Summer Williams Allen of www.designismine.blogspot.com

Ball jars used at our bar...Painted by me using acrylic paint

Cupcake signage...I bought mini easels and chalkboards at the craft store, adhered tiny paper flowers to them and then my maid of honor did the lettering.

Dinner Menu...We purchased a kitchen cabinet door for a couple dollars at The ReBuilding Center (www.rebuildingcenter.org) and then spray painted it with chalkboard paint. My maid of honor did the lettering.

Signature cocktail display...I bought two wood picture frames at Michael’s, put several coats of primer on them and then spray painted the inside with chalkboard paint. I actually used the back of the frames instead of the front. My maid of honor did the lettering for these, too. The week of the wedding I made all the rhubarb simple syrup for our “Blushing Bride” cocktail.

Relief station...I spray painted my old nightstand coral.

Chalkboard doors for program and road sign...We purchased two doors at the ReBuilding Center, primed them and then spray painted them with chalkboard paint. My maid of honor did the lettering.

Camera bar...To create our camera bar we found a wooden window frame in my parents’ barn and painted it white. We secured the “camera bar” sign in the middle of the sign with twine and then used an antique table from my parents’ house as the “bar.”

Cake topper garland...Made by me using two wood knitting needles, bakers twine and some washi tape.

Table settings...Log rounds cut by my brother, jars and bottles pulled from my parents’ barn.