I’m the first person to admit that I’m a tad bit hyperbolic, but when I tell you that this gorgeous Heritage Prairie Farm wedding is heartwarming, it’s a serious understatement. Because beyond all of the crazy beautiful details and the cozy farm setting (I want) is a story of two darling sweethearts and a tribute to a grandmother you just can’t miss. See it all captured by Cassandra Eldridge right here.
From the Bride… When Michael and I dreamed of our wedding day as we planned, we never in a million years would have guessed that everything would turn out EXACTLY as it looked in our heads. I stumbled upon Heritage Prairie Farm with my parents on a cold, gloomy New Year’s Eve and we fell in love with the place instantly, I knew I didn’t need to see any other venues and needed to show Michael immediately. It captured everything we had talked about wanting in a wedding venue – the down-home, Midwest hospitality that we love about living in Chicago (where Michael was born and raised) and the quaint, rustic feel of my home in Philadelphia.
We love to entertain and are always throwing gatherings and cooking dinner for friends and family, and we wanted our wedding to feel like you stepped into our own backyard for an intimate dinner party. It was exactly how the night turned out. The weather was exactly what we pictured at 68 degrees and impossibly sunny, the music was all the Motown and friend favorites we’d hinted for the DJ’s to play, and the food was better than most of the five star restaurants I’ve visited.
Working with the world’s BEST vendors, we were able to bring this vision of a cozy night in to our outdoor venue. We used the farm’s claim to fame as a bee/honey farm as our inspiration and married the symbol with our love of all things quaint for a french country feel. The color schemes we used of golds, pale yellows and creams truly captured the acres of wheat and corn, and the golden glow of Fall. Anywhere we could find a bee – we did it! Beeswax candle gifts, bee printed burlap runners, invitations, gift tags, you name it!
We wanted our day to feel as unique as we are. Having being raised Jewish, and Michael raised Catholic, we aimed to have a ceremony that pleased everyone and still have a special, ceremonial touch to it. The words of the Hand Fasting ceremony really resonated with us as well as it’s ancient tradition, so our officiant quickly learned all the words to recite. All of my jewelry came from my paternal grandmother who passed down some vintage jewelry to me when my sister got married, and I have been dying to wear it finally! Together with my girlfriends, Mike’s mom and sisters, and my mother and sister, we created lots of DIY projects on Friday nights where I provided wine and snacks as a “thank you” for being amazing gift.
The day had so much meaning for us on so many levels. My grandmother turned 88 that same day, and flew all the way over from Belfast, Northern Ireland to celebrate with us. Instead of having a traditional cake for ourselves, we went with doughnut holes so we could save the cake for something much more important – celebrating her birthday. She was so overcome with happiness (and surprise!) when we wheeled out the two tier cake with buttercream and cannoli filling just for her. We had everyone sing to her and she blew out the candles. Having her and Mike’s grandmother there was the world to us. So, while the day was a celebration of our love, it was also really a party to thank our incredible family and the best friends on Earth for everything they have done for us. We would be nothing without them and the day couldn’t have existed without them by our side.
Photography: Cassandra Eldridge Photography | Photography: Cassandra Eldridge Photography | Floral Design: Floral Wonders | Wedding Dress: Nordstrom | Invitations: Chips And Salsa Designs | Wedding Shoes: Nordstrom | Bridesmaids Dresses: BHLDN | Makeup: Beauty on Call | Hair: Melisa Spizziri | DJ: Toast and Jam | Mens Attire: Nordstrom | Officiant: Leslie Sann | Wedding Venue: Heritage Prairie Farms | Burlap Bee Sign: Simply French Market | Drink Menu: Sweet Press Studio | Menus: Etsy - Emruth | String Trio: Beautiful Strings