If you need a little spring in your step before heading off into the weekend, this downright darling Miami wedding by 13:13 Photography will do just the trick. Completely DIY and completely adorable, it is as budget-friendly as it is beautiful. All the friends and family involved had a hand in making it such a memorable affair, and I think they can most definitely pat themselves on the back for a job very well done! There is a weekend worth of wedding in the full gallery, so stop on by!
Our wedding, after a lot of work, turned out to be exactly what Dustin and I had envisioned. At first, I had wanted to get married on the beach since I’ve always been fond of the ocean. But once I started looking at the costs of Miami venues I knew that option was out of the question. I then resorted to the internet for venue options and happened upon this beautiful image of a wedding ceremony under a great old oak tree. It was stunning. Breathtaking. When I saw this, I knew this is what I wanted.
Dustin and I were high school sweethearts. We have been together over eight years so we have lots of memories all throughout Miami. One Valentine’s Day we had a picnic at Matheson Hammock Park in Coral Gables. And it just so happens to be filled with great old oak trees. Flash forward a few years, we visited the location and after wavering back and forth we decided to have our wedding ceremony in front of one of the oak trees. Our vision was a bit difficult to understand, especially for our family, but once November 14th came around, everyone LOVED the ceremony location. It was described as being very “us.” Easy going, rustic, and full of natural inspirations. I had ordered our save the dates prior to booking our venue. I followed our color scheme of aqua, tan and white and purchased scratch-off save the dates from unlesssomeonelikeyou on Etsy. Our guests thought it was fun and unexpected.
Our invitations proved a little more difficult. My friends and family say that I don’t like to make decisions, and they were proven right when I wavered back and forth between 3 or 4 designs. It finally came down to the tree design and our “logo.” I wanted to introduce our guests to the theme of our wedding, so I included an oak tree in the design with a “carved” heart and Y+D in the trunk. I designed every piece in the suite with the exception of the map which was designed by finelinestationery, another Etsy find. The pocketfold was actually a mistake. I had designed the invitations around a specific pocketfold, but used the measurements of another one with the wrong paper. So what did I do? Ordered the right paper and made my own pocketfolds! It came out for the best because Dustin was able to punch out a heart on each pocketfold showing part of the design. We wrapped the invitations in blue and white bakers twine with a tag and the guest’s name. Even after going through the ups and downs of this whole process, I’ve decided to open my own Etsy shop, ylovesd!
Attire-wise, I kept my dress flowy and fun, with a simple one-shoulder flower dress from David’s Bridal. My something blue was a gorgeous set of earrings from lulieyal– which I still love and wear today. The bridal bouquet was made up of white hydrangeas with bear grass and willow bark, with the handle covered in blue and white bakers twine. I had my something borrowed (from my sister)–2 lockets, each with an image of my father and grandfather that were tied to my bouquet. It was a beautiful way to remember them. For my bridesmaids, I only had two requirements –their dress had to be short and tan. My vision turned out perfect, because all four dresses were completely different but looked beautiful side by side. My hubby, Dustin wore a tan suit from Men’s Warehouse, while the groomsmen wore khaki pants and a white button down shirt. The best man opted to wear a khaki vest to set him apart, and all them adorned matching aqua ties. The ties were a nice pop of color. The cutest member of our wedding party was our beautiful niece, the flower girl. Of course me being “non-traditional”, her outfit needed to be fun and different. I ordered a tutu from TheDressUpChest–my fourth Etsy find so far. Being only three, she loved “dressing up” and the tutu was a perfect choice.
As far as the ceremony decorations, I wanted to keep it clean and simple. My wonderful brother and cousins woke up bright and early Sunday morning and brought the location to life. We hung white paper lanterns through out the branches of the massive oak tree. Following inspiration from our invitations, Dustin carved out a heart from wood and hung the heart with a Y+D (props used in our engagement session) at the base of the tree. A week before the wedding, we decided to scope out the location. My brother and Dustin thought it would be best to build a wedding platform to place in front of the tree. It turned out to be a great idea, as we were slightly elevated during our vows and it served as the perfect location for family portraits. We also placed lanterns at each corner of the platform and spread rose petals around the tree to complete the look. Down the aisle we placed shepherd hooks with hanging buckets filled with fresh blue and white hydrangeas. I also made “Tears of Joys” tissue packets and placed them in a basket for our slightly emotional guests. At the entrance of the park, we had Sarah from sarahedesigns create a rustic hand painted ceremony sign marking it’s location. It matched our theme perfectly and we plan on hanging it on the wall of our first home.
If you thought the ceremony was filled with DIY projects, the reception topped it all. The biggest, labor intensive project was our custom napkins. Each guest at our wedding would have their own dinner napkin along with a matching place card. Over the course of months, I purchased a total of six different fabric designs. My wonderful and amazing mother sewed every single napkin. Once all the sewing was done, I assigned each guest a napkin and table number and went to work on the place cards. The cards were punched on one side with a heart cut-out and the guest’s fabric swatch was glued in the place card. I printed the place cards and then stamped the table number a couple days before the wedding. We purchased a large corkboard and Dustin covered it with tan fabric. We slowly and painstakingly hung each place card in alphabetical order on the board. It was….breathtaking, a masterpiece. I can laugh about it now, but that project was well worth the time and effort. When our guests arrived at the reception venue, the Red Fish Grill (which was on the water!) they would locate their place card/hangtag, go to their table number and find their corresponding napkin. This was my favorite project and well worth the time spent on it.
For centerpieces, I had purchased aqua mason jars from ebay along with clear mason jars from my local grocery store. We arrange them on the table with blue and white hydrangeas and tied bakers twine along the rim with a tag featuring our Y+D logo and our wedding date. We cut and arranged all the flower centerpieces two days before the wedding. The table numbers I designed and printed and stuck them in white Ikea frames. I decided not to have just one guest book. Instead, I made 15 guest books, one for each table. Each book featured an image from our gorgeous Everglades-themed engagement session and a question. “What’s your favorite memory of us?” and “What is your hope/wish for us?” were a couple of our guest book questions. Looking back, each of our guest books offers more then a signature, we can laugh and cry about everyone’s message to us. For our cupcake table, Dustin helped me make a “Love is Sweet” sign out of dollies which we hung on the front of the table. Around the dance floor, we continued the theme by hanging white and aqua paper lanterns throughout the canopy.
Aside from a few details, we let nature serve as the major decoration. We were outside on a beautiful sunny day with palm trees swaying gently above us and the ocean wind gently breezing by. Both my hubby and I can attest that our wedding day was perfect. It was very us, and we did things the way we wanted, not what was expected. We couldn’t have done it without both of our families, who really helped us throughout the whole experience. For having a wedding budget under $12k in Miami, it was a great accomplishment on everyone’s part!
Photography: 13:13 Photogtaphy / Hair: Rose Mejia / Video: Marty Reinhardt / Band: Dexter Hurtado and students from UM’s School of Music / Cigar rollers: On-Site Cigars / Cupcakes: LA Sweets / Custom hand painted ceremony sign: Sarah Elizabeth Design / Ceremony Venue: Matheson Hammock Park in Coral Gables / Reception Venue: Red Fish Grill / Flower Girl Tutu: TheDressUpChest / Dress: David’s Bridal / Invitations: Fine Line Stationery / Save the Dates: Unless Someone Like You