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Lakeside Taboo Resort Wedding

It’s the dead of winter and we’re all learning new terms like “polar” and “vortex” but I’ve got a little pocket of sunshine for your day and it comes in the form of a beautiful, pink, lakeside wedding. I can feel the love, happiness, and warmth pouring out of Rowell Photography’s images thawing my frozen bones, and I’m more than thankful. I’m smitten.

From the photographer… Amy & Dwight were married at Taboo Resort in Muskoka, Canada. Wedding event design Rachel A. Clingen created a beautiful mix of rustic and feminine details to really tie in both Dwight and Amy’s personalities which made their wedding a very personal and memorable wedding day experience. Their ceremony took place at the Fireside Grill Patio at Taboo Resort which over looks Lake Muskoka. After the ceremony guests retreated to the Boat House for the reception dinner and dancing. With panoramic views of the lake from the Boat House guests found themselves wandering out on to the dock in between courses and enjoying the wrap around balcony in the sweet summer evening weather. Keeping with their rustic theme, as gifts they gave guests mini bottles of Canadian Maple Syrup!

Even though the sky was overcast for most of the day just before night fell the sun peaked through the clouds and lit up the sky in a brilliant orange, giving Dwight and Amy a truly romantic end to a perfect day!

Cake: The Sugar Garden | DJ: Kevin Babcock at Magical Muskoka Moments DJ Service | Décor & Floral: Rachel A. Clingen Wedding & Event Design | Hair: Urban Textures (Gravenhurst) | Invitations, place cards, stationary: Big Orange Designs | Makeup: Janine Holmes | Officiant: Wendy Oke at All Seasons Weddings | Photography: Rowell Photography | Venue: Taboo Resort Golf & Spa | Venue: Taboo Resort Golf & Spa

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Rustic Lake Wedding

This is the kind of wedding I absolutely adore; a rustic meets laid-back sort of party where friends and family come together for the entire weekend to celebrate true love.  It’s the kind of wedding where lakeside nuptials, campfires and “Sweet Child of Mine” all come together to create absolute magic… and you can see every beautiful moment captured by Jenn & Dave Stark right here.

And a sweet little film from Jenn & Dave Stark… enjoy.

From Jenn & Dave Stark… Right from the first email Dave and I knew Jess & Alex were our kind of people and that the day they had planned was going to be something special and from the heart. We met up with both of them and just fell into a rhythm almost instantly and could have talked for hours more. Jess is thoughtful and isn’t afraid to be herself, and Alex, you can always hear his laugh rising above everyone else’s. Such good people.

For their wedding, they invited all their family and friends to a resort in Muskoka, Ontario next to the lake for the last long weekend of the summer, where they’d have a night-before welcome campfire, be reunited with friends they hadn’t seen in years (they’d be living in BC and Seoul up until recently), with everyone staying in cabins. Jess & Alex would be married on the dock to a thoughtful and personal ceremony created by Jess, go out in a canoe together, have lemonade as the sun set, and have one heck of a good dance party.

I love the thoughtfulness that went into every part of their day… the way they encouraged everyone to relax, unplug and enjoy the last long weekend of summer… how they tried to either re-purpose/make by hand/buy used every aspect of the day…. her wedding dress was bought used, with the hopes of selling it again to another bride-to-be…. Jessica also made it a labour of love creating the beautiful pieces used around the property, repurposing old barn board to create all the signs you’ll see in the images below. Of special note is the sign post listing all the places her & Alex have lived/visited around the world!

It was just a completely relaxed day, with no pretenses and everyone just coming together as a group and having a great time as summer came to an end.

From the Bride… The grounds of Port Cunnington had a naturally beautiful ambiance that you could just ease into. The lake, the beach, the forested surroundings, the bonfire with Adirondack chairs, and docks with lounge chairs gave air to relaxation so one could just enjoy the weekend. With the wedding being a Labour Day weekend long affair, we enjoyed a BBQ and bonfire with s’mores and a huge sing-a-long late into Saturday night. The next day the sun was out and the lake was the place to be – kayaking, paddle boarding and lounging it up prior to the ceremony.

The ceremony was held on the lakeside dock, which really encompassed our laidback attitudes. We entered to a classical version of Guns and Roses’ “Sweet Child of Mine,” which was an accolade to my mom, as she has always been such a supporting and loving parent with a strong passion for music; and GnR is totally her style. The ceremony was short and sweet with lots of laughs and smiles. I wrote the ceremony so that it was a true reflection of us; we both wrote our own vows as we thought that our personal expressions of love were a very significant aspect of the ceremony. A close family friend read a Native American reading that spoke to our beliefs of marriage. My best friend Amy sang one of her songs as we signed the registrar and it was so moving to have her share her talents with us.

After the ceremony, cocktails and hor d’oeuvres were served on the lawn, alongside lawn games to enjoy. The games were a collection of bocce, washer toss and lasso golf made by my father and friends.

Alex was adamant that we served good comfort food that reflected the season. This led to our decision to serve a variety of late summer/fall style appetizers on the lawn during cocktail hour and an array of dinner choices – as we had numerous dietary restrictions. Our dessert table was three cakes from Sweet Confections. They were a three-tiered buttercream lemon cake, a two-tiered buttercream chocolate cake, and a two-tiered buttercream banana cake. Late night was pizza, guacamole and salsa with tortilla chips. I don’t think our guest or we could have eaten anymore!

My mom was a huge part of this wedding and I could not have done it without her. Alex and I were living overseas during the planning and she put so much time and effort into it. I also had tremendous help from my other mother Helen, who taught me how to sew. The table runners were my first project. The guest book is squares of fabric signed by the guests that will be foundation of my first quilt. The decor was do it yourself with a lot of help from your friends. There wasn’t a theme, we really just focused on reusing/make by hand/buying used as wanted to make sure our wedding reflected our personal beliefs. A large part of that is the plan for the items to be used again. For me the décor was based around the flowers. I wanted in season blooms everywhere.

The wood décor was salvage century barn board from a family friends farm. My father used the wood to create our lemonade stand. All the signs Alex and I made were hand painted by my talented Aunt and Uncle. The logs are also from the farm which I used a soldering iron to burn the hearts. The cake and escort card dresser are my childhood pieces that made it all more special. I collected the vast array of milk glass that was used and will be saving a few pieces than passing them along to the next bride. Our favours were raw honey from a neighbour’s farm, that my sister, mom and I put together. The collection of family photos and parents and grandparents on their wedding day was another small detail that just made it memorable.

Alex’s personal touches were the hand made barn board bookshelf and chalkboards he built. We brought the bookshelf to the lawn and set it up with the lemonade stand to serve the gift of mason jars. We focused on the small details and just let the day come to together. We didn’t have a coordinator but a friend, Leah did us the honours of keeping tabs on everything for the day- and she worked her butt off.

All and all the weekend was 100% true to us and we wouldn’t have done it any different. I can’t express the level of happiness I felt on that day, and I’d happily do it a hundred times over again. I look forward to sharing and passing along the small details for the next bride and groom to enjoy!

Photography: Jenn & Dave Stark | Ceremony & Reception: Port Cunnington Lodge | Hair & Make up: BlushPretty | Baker: Sweet Confections | Florist: Jane Marshall Flowers | Bride’s Gown: Amsale (Dahlia) | Hair Accessory: Etsy, Wearableart | Groom’s Attire: Indochino | Ceremony Music: Amy Cunningham

Muskoka Wedding at Sherwood Inn Wedding from Green Autumn Photography

Planning a three day wedding weekend in just three short months sounds like an almost impossible task; something only a superhero duo (aka, a brilliant bride and groom) could pull off.  Well, lovelies… meet that duo.  Two seriously smitten sweethearts who took their office romance and love of environmentally friendly weddings and crafted a day that is beyond amazing.  I’m talking fab DIY details, waterside yoga (!) and an entire gallery of lovely captured by Green Autumn Photography.  Join me there for all of the pretty.


From Green Autumn PhotographyCarolyn and Brian met through work and soon discovered they were meant to be together. Both working in the field of Ecology, having shared values to reduce their ecological footprint, and a mutual love for the great outdoors, their wedding planning and decor reflects this through DIY elements and location, while incorporating awesome style that’s full of character just like them! Carolyn and Brian are full of energy, up for anything, and incredibly fun. They planned their entire three-day wedding celebration in just three months! This was not done without the capable planning services of Holly Matrimony Weddings.

Carolyn and Brian wanted their Muskoka destination wedding to be fun and relaxing for their loved ones, which is why they planned it to be a weekend long event with all staying at Sherwood Inn where the wedding was held. The DIY elements consisted of a monogram tree design that Carolyn and Brian created together, as well as hand-painted signs on barn board, as well as the barn board podium (to become a headboard for their bed) in the reception — all handcrafted by Brian himself. Several Etsy finds were incorporated, such as the rustic wood slices as place settings, the customized bridal hanger, and a bunting thank you banner for photos that included their personal monogram design!

Their guests each received a canvas monogrammed welcome bag filled with local goodies and a monogrammed umbrella. Bridesmaid dresses were all different styles and colours. Brian’s attire was great, setting him apart from his men, and we loved their rustic and muted flowers! Getting married along the waters edge was significant, as both were raised on the water. Carolyn having grown up spending much of her time with family at the cottage, and Brian being born and raised in Newfoundland. Reverend Sue officiated the ceremony.

Band: Running Red Lights | Bride's Dress: Valencienne | Cupcakes: Simply Em's | DJ: Knight Hawks DJ Service | Event Design: Mode Function Event Design Ltd. | Hair: Thomas North Hair Studios | Invitations: Papergrafix | Photography: Green Autumn | Transportation: Hammond Transportation Ltd. | Wedding Planning: Holly Matrimony Weddings | Wedding Venue: The Sherwood Inn

Windermere House Wedding from A Brit & A Blonde

I am so excited for you SMPers to lay eyes on this wedding, I can hardly stand it. I just know that every rose by Seasons In The Country, every bit of prettiness of this Vera Wang princess gown, every mossy table number, and every single second of this wedding at the Windermere House are moments that you will adore with everything in your being. The sunlight graces every image from A Brit & A Blonde so perfectly that it seems to have followed the fête all day long, and with two lovebirds as sweet as these two, I don’t blame it one bit. Find the whole wedding in the gallery here.

From A Brit & A Blonde This was a really sweet, vintage Muskoka wedding with garden party fun. The bride has an eye for design and put together all the details herself — table numbers made out of moss with old books for that perfect touch, hand-scrawled chalkboards, program fans, postcards with a throwback feel, mason jars brimming with flowers, etc. The small pieces of bark for the seating names was great. And we adored the sweet table with all those delish goodies — hello, cake pops! Krystyn made the signage for it too. The lovely books with the cut-out “Love is Sweet” and “Happily Ever After” went perfectly with this storybook wedding (the bride got these from Etsy).

The Muskoka backdrop was perfect for this Labour Day long weekend wedding. It was quintessential Canadiana! Krystyn and Matt are young, but they are old souls when it comes to love. They were a perfect match.

From the Bride… We met while watching the Cornell Big Red football team take on Princeton one chilly fall day. I ran inside to warm up. It was here that I met Matt’s mom who, upon finding out that I was a fellow Canadian, exclaimed, “You have to meet my son!” After Cornell won the game, I was introduced to Matt.

Wedding Photography: A Brit & A Blonde / Wedding Venue: Windermere House in Windermere, Ontario / Floral Design: Seasons In The Country / Catering: Creative Catering by Cathy Beneway / Wedding Cake + Sweets: Le Delice Pastry Shop / Wedding Stationery: DIY by the Bride / Wedding Dress: Vera Wang / Bride’s Shoes: Kate Spade / Makeup: Ashley K. Harrison for MAC Cosmetics / Groom’s Attire: Harry Rosen

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Muskoka Winter Photo Shoot from An Artistic Affair

I’ve spent my entire life dreaming of a magical winter wedding, so when I first got my hands on this snow-filled inspiration shoot from An Artistic Affair, I was like a kid in a candy store.  Chock-full of vibrant red hues (with pops of aqua blue for good measure) and yummy treats from Cakewalk Catering and The Sassy Lamb, it’s acres upon acres of glorious powder meets an entire gallery of breathtaking images from Visual Roots Photography.  See them all right here.

From An Artistic AffairMy name is Bryn Allison, and I own and operate An Artistic Affair, a new venture for me that has, so far, been amazingly fun and invigorating! I have been in the events industry for over five years, but it wasn’t until last year that I decided to call myself “the boss.” I met Kate of Visual Roots Photography at the Muskoka Wedding show in January 2012. To encourage weddings and events year round in Muskoka (it’s considered cottage country, so it’s a BIG summer destination), we decided to collaborate and organize a shoot in February.

We wanted the session to mirror the brilliance of the Muskoka landscape, in addition to highlighting local talent and product offerings. The details were so fun to gather and put together! You will notice that there are some DIY projects that I put together — the menus, Mr. & Mrs chairs, favors, s’mores bundle and burlap runner all added personality and fit with the sweet and charming barn theme. We decided on turquoise and red to add a pop of color against the snow and add contract to the barn board and other rustic elements.

It was an odd day, weather-wise that starting with freezing rain in the morning, had sun mid-day and then moved on to a beautiful snowfall in the afternoon. The snowflakes were HUGE!  Kate and I didn’t much mind the rolling clouds, snow and occasional hits of sun. The models also took the chilllly weather with stride; they were absolute champs. They persevered, didn’t gripe once and never lost sight of their smiles. The hot chocolate and fire shots were part of their “rest and get warm” moments in the dairy house in between outdoor sessions.

Photography: Visual Roots Photography / Photo Shoot Venue: Brooklands Farm in Muskoka, Ontario / Event Styling + Coordination: An Artistic Affair / Floral Design: Jane Marshall Flowers / Cupcakes + Cake: Cakewalk Catering / Cake Pops: The Sassy Lamb / Rentals: Muskoka Party Rentals / Napkins: Around the Table / Wedding Dress: Jasmine Bridal / Hair: 6KG Salon (705-684-9066)