I have a feeling greenhouses will be getting some new kinds of calls after bride-to-be’s see this rustic wedding before us. This (ingenious) couple toasted their friends and family at Snow Avenue Greenhouse following their at home ceremony, with Justine Montigny and Alex & Tabitha Blanski capturing it all. Get ahead of what I’m predicting to be the new hotspot to say “I do” with these pretty pics right this way!
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From the Bride… Our Wedding Day was everything we could have ever dreamed of & more. Alex and I were engaged June of 2014 at our emotional going away party in front of all of our family & friends. We were leaving Michigan, the place we called home for 20+ years and moving out to Denver, Colorado so Alex could complete his medical residency. Little did we know that we started a proposal movement because shortly after we got engaged 5 pairs of our good friends drank the water & did too! All of us were planning Summer of 2015 weddings and knew it would be a whirlwind year.
I was always the girl who dreamed about her big day but not the girl who had all wedding decisions figured out and had been waiting forever for the proposal. Due to the big move and getting settled in our new home it took Alex & I a long time to make any kind of formal decision in regards to date, venue, let alone any of the details. Thankfully, I had the greatest support system in my event-planning older sister and Maid of Honor, my Mom who couldn’t sleep at night dreaming up all the pretty details, my aunt who worked tirelessly on getting our backyard into ceremony shape and all of the other family & friends who made this wedding happen. It truly takes a village and I was not even remotely prepared for all the decisions to come my way. Fast forward to late September, we still had no date, photographer, dress, nothing. I was visiting my family in Michigan when my mom asked me to run to the local greenhouse with her to pick up some pumpkins and fall greenery to spruce up her house. We pulled up to the adorable Snow Avenue Greenhouse that sat on a bed of rolling hills out in the ‘country’ of Ada, MI. I didn’t think anything of it at first but my amazing mother had the wedding on her mind. It was like a lightbulb went off as she exclaimed “let’s just do the wedding here!” I got behind this idea almost instantly as I looked around the gorgeous glass-roof greenhouse dreaming of all the spring blooms that would soon fill the space. The place was immaculate and even better the owner, Dave VanDeBurg, was so sweet and so willing to make our wildest requests come true. Snow Avenue never had an event of this magnitude but Dave was up to the challenge and we couldn’t have done it without him. We planned our big day on May 24th, 2015, the Sunday of Memorial Weekend. This was the only day that wouldn’t interfere with Dave’s business as he would be closed on Memorial Day so we had the necessary time to transform this working greenhouse into our reception venue.
We would be married in my parent’s backyard overlooking the creek where I spent my childhood. One of Alex’s best friends would be our officiant. Our biggest inspiration was that we had to be unique to standout from the 10 weddings that would occur the following summer. We had our hands in every detail of the day from my Mom & sisters building a custom fairy garden in the backyard to mimic our wedding day to designing every centerpiece to be completely different. My siblings made custom signs out of salvaged barn wood and we had some interesting Pinterest sessions constructing these yarn & glue floating balls that would hang from the backyard trees, although a messy project they turned out beautifully. Our centerpieces were meticulously designed by my Mom & sisters with a burlap runner covered in moss, topped with antiques that were collected over the years by my family who has a serious antique market addiction. The design was very elegant with rustic touches. We really wanted the day to show off our unique style all while highlighting the true beauty of the spring flowers that surrounded all of our loved ones.
The entire day was so emotional with all of the love in the air. We kicked off our greenhouse reception with a touching speech from Alex’s brother, Jimmy, our Best Man followed by a tear-inducing, unique speech my older sister, Kelsey gave filled with favorite songs from over the years that she tied to memorable moments of our relationship as sisters leading up to what shaped Alex & I as a couple. It was absolutely incredible and I am certain there wasn’t a dry eye in that greenhouse. We ate amazing farm-to-table food provided by Chef Roman & the team at Kangaroo Kitchen whose New Zealand accent all the women fell in love with. We danced to the funky fresh beats of DJ, Adrian Butler who was convinced by tipsy guests to breakout in a rap freestyle. Our day was so beautifully captured by story-telling photographer Justine Montigny who delivered the prettiest images of all our hard work & videographer husband/wife power couple Alex & Tabitha Blanski who caught on film all of the happy, emotional fun-loving details of the day. I cry every time I watch our wedding film.
One of my favorite moments was dancing with my Dad at our reception to “The Feather Song” from Forrest Gump, a movie we would always watch together growing up and a song that he hand-selected for me. As soon as Adrian started playing the track I saw my Dad and burst into tears. A wedding is so symbolic for me not only for the life-long union you are making with your soulmate but for the meaning behind your Dad giving you away to the new man in your life. It is like watching life come full circle in the best day ever and sharing that with all of your closest loved ones.
A lot of brides hire some type of wedding planner or day of coordinator to help execute all of the million little things that come up when putting on a wedding. In my opinion I had the best team out there because it was filled with all of the people who supported & grew with our relationship. It was very stressful given my lack of planning but our families never gave up on Alex & I. This wedding was such a hit and we owe it all to their hard work. Knowing they busted their butts for months out of the love they have for us means the world and we could not have put on this fabulous day without them. We love each and every one of you!
Photography: Justine Montigny | Videography: Alex & Tabitha Blanski | Floral Design: Eastern Floral | Wedding Dress: Misdress | Cake: The Cakabakery | Ceremony Venue: Private Residence | Reception Venue: Snow Avenue Greenhouse | Bridesmaids' Dresses: Various Sources | Catering: Kangaroo Kitchen | Makeup: Knockout Agency | Hair: Amanda Masson | DJ: Adrian Butler | Groomsmen's Attire: Joseph A. Bank | Paper Goods: Abby Timmer | Rentals: Cascade Rentals