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Rustic Small Business Inspired Local Love Wedding

One thing we LOVE about Carrie & Steve’s Big Day? The fact that they used only their favorite local vendors. That’s right, it’s the ultimate small business lovefest and we’re smitten with every single second of it. Thanks to Whim Events, Mayflour Cake & ConfectionsGus And Ruby, Pretty Plum Sugar, Haute Bride, Jenny Yoo, White Dress By The Shore, and Jenny Moloney Photography this is one gallery you won’t want to miss. See it all in The Vault!

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From the Bride… Steve and I met in AmeriCorps 8 years before tying the knot at the beautiful Barn at Gibbet Hill outside of Boston, MA. We built our relationship on the shared experience of traveling the country and volunteering together in small towns and cities across the country, learning to appreciate the beauty and character of the communities in which we worked and explored, as we got to know all of each other’s strengths, quirks, and goals.

When it came time to plan our wedding, Steve and I knew we wanted our day to feel really personal, special, and reflective of who we are and what’s important to us. Part of that meant choosing vendors and small businesses with whom we felt a true connection, who shared our values and heard our vision, and who could help us attend to the many details of our day. After scouring four states, we finally found our our farm-to-table, rustic-chic venue, the church, and the inn where we would get ready for our big day. We found comfort in knowing that all parts of our wedding would reflect what we had chosen together with the help of the WHIM team. We were thrilled to have the opportunity to work with the brilliant and talented Natalie Pinney and her team at WHIM Events and Floral Design to help us with the planning, coordination, and event design for our big day. We drew inspiration from Pinterest to handcraft our Save the Dates, used Canva to create our ceremony programs, and worked with Gus & Ruby Letterpress to design the most gorgeous watercolor invitation suite. We searched for various Etsy artists to create a custom wedding stole to be worn by my brother/ceremony officiant, make personalized mugs, tote bags, and scarves for the bridesmaids, and create a photo charm for my bouquet in memory of my dad. Our hotel bags were designed by my sister/maid-of-honor, filled with treats and necessities, cookies made by my mother, popcorn from a vendor we met at our community farmer’s market, and stuffed by a team of aunts, uncles, cousins, and even my 95-year-old grandmother! Favors included beer we brewed a couple months before the wedding at Hopsters, coldbrew coffee made in our neighborhood, and local flowers and produce. Our cake was made on Boston’s North Shore by a one-woman-owned business, the day-of calligraphy and extras were crafted by area artists, and of course my gorgeous Modern Trousseau dress was custom made for me in my home state of Connecticut. Some of my favorite moments included having our ceremony officiated by my older brother, the trio sung by close family friends, the thoughtful toasts by my mom, sister, and brother-in-law, and dancing the night away to the incredibly talented band. Steve loved sharing our handwritten vows before friends and family, watching me ring the church bell at the end of our ceremony, and dancing with his mom to a duet sung by my sister and me. All of the fun was captured by the powerhouse husband-and-wife duo of Jenny Moloney Photography.

While it took many, many months, endless to-do lists, and some stressful nights to get everything done, it was well worth it to see everything come together just exactly the way we had imagined it.

From the Planner & Design Team… From the moment we met Carrie & Steve, we knew they were one of the most thoughtful couples we had ever worked with. These two are such kind-hearted folk, always putting others needs before their own. This was not only inspiring, but a true testament to how the couple met each other in AmeriCorps!

So, we were not surprised one bit when they mentioned one of their biggest wedding priorities (aside from creating a welcoming environment for guests) was to “shop small” – to support local businesses, artists, farmers and american-grown flowers for their wedding day. They were avid attenders of the Newport Folk festival, and hoped their wedding would host a similar vibe: organic, light, lively, sustainable, musical and welcoming. We instantly connected to this and worked with them to curate a wedding day full of “local love.”

Carrie and Steve chose our team for Full Planning & Design. While we helped them find their ideal vendors, they took careful consideration of who they felt a true connection with. It was a key part of the welcoming environment they wanted. When it came to design, the couple chose a blush and dusty gray color pallet, highlighted by small elements of gold, for a rustic yet refined look. And, Carrie’s love of dahlias became the frontrunner of every design aspect thereafter. She loved its organic nature, colors and texture. Throughout the design process, Carrie would even send us pictures of her favorite dahlias she came across at flower shops! We knew this vibrant little flower was going to make a big impact.

When choosing invitations, we worked with Portsmouth letterpress designer Gus & Ruby to create a custom watercolor letterpress invitation, highlighting the flower that Carrie loved so much. Each element, including the calligraphy and watercolor florals were hand-painted by artist Poppy & Scooter.and brought to life on paper. The vibe was organic yet elegant, and set the tone from the start.

On the wedding day, we aimed to keep the vibe earthy yet polished, understated yet well thought out. The tablescape featured simply ivory linens with a small hint of gold china for a graceful look. The water color menu (also created by Gus & Ruby and Poppy & Scooter) featured simple greenery that complimented the farm-to-table meal. And of course, the centerpieces designed by Moira Thompson from Whim Events featured local dinner plate dahlias, American-grown hydrangea, and local, seasonal blooms. Wood signage and day of paper featured more hand-painted floral design & calligraphy for an artistic touch.

One of our absolute favorite elements to dream up for Carrie and Steve’s day was the”Local Love” farm stand favor concept. For months, Carrie and our team could not decide on a gift to thank guests. Succulents? Local treats? Cold Brew? (their favorite thing to drink on lazy Sundays!). One day, we realized why we could not decide…because we did not have to pick just one! From there, the farm stand idea was created. We picked bunches of local flowers from Herritage Flowers, scored Cambridge Cold Brew, bundled native peaches and blueberries from Wilson Farm in Lexington, and added local beer brewed by the couple! It was a huge hit! And to be honest, we have never seen a favor table so empty as at the end of the evening. Guests were beaming ear to ear picking out their bounty.

While we handled much of the logistics and design, Carrie and Steve were not afraid to tackle DIY projects on their own as well. It was an important part of their creative planning together and helped keep their family and friends involved!

We loved being a part of their day. As a vendor, it truly felt like a wonderful community working together and giving back, while celebrating new journeys to come! Congratulations Carrie & Steve!

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Photography: Jenny Moloney Photography | Wedding Dress: Modern Trousseau-Ginny | Wedding Cake: Mayflour Confections | Stationery: Gus & Ruby Letterpress | Reception Venue: The Barn At Gibbet Hill | Bridesmaids' Dresses: Jenny Yoo | Makeup: Alexandra Dale Makeup Artistry | Hair: Caitlin Murphy Stylist | Band: Hip Pocket Orchestra | Favors: Wilson Farm | Favors: Cambridge Cold Brew | Favors: Local Flowers From Heritage Flowers | Groom's Attire: J.Crew | Wedding Venue: John Gibbons of First Parish in Bedford | Bridal Bouquet Charm: Delaney Jewelry | Bridal Earrings: Haute Bride | Bridal Gown: Modern Trousseau-Ginny | Bridal Shoes: BHLDN | Bridesmaid Robes: Plum Pretty Sugar | Bridesmaid Shop: Flair Bridesmaid Boutique | Bridesmaid Tote Bags: ZCreateDesign | Bus: Able Limo | Ceremony Musicians: New England String Quartet | Cookie Bar Calligraphy: Extras By Alaina | Dress Shop: The White Dress by the shore | Escort Cards Calligraphy: Yennygrams | Planning + Design + Floral: Whim Events | Rentals: Rentals Unlimited | Ring Bearer Handmade Ties: Molli & Bean | Wood Signage + Calligraphy: Poppy And Scooter

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Rustic Summer Wedding at The Barn at Gibbet Hill

There is just something about barn weddings that I don’t think I’ll ever tire of. The combination of rustic and romantic, the relaxed elegance of it all – and the photos always come out beautifully! Case in point, this summer celebration captured by Deborah Zoe, where the Bride and Groom beamed and the whole day was a pure dream. See every second right this way!

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From Deborah Zoe Photography… RJ and Meredith are high school sweethearts who met in Spanish class over eight years ago. As Meredith describes it, RJ was the class clown who she wanted nothing to do with. But as soon as they started talking flirting, it was all over. They’ve been inseparable ever since!

When it came time to pick a venue for their wedding day, they knew the perfect spot, Gibbet Hill. Located in the town where they grew up and fell in love, it also had the approachable and rustic feel they were looking for. Meredith picked a delicate palette of creams to accent the day, including her amazingly beautiful ombre laced dress.

From the Bride… We searched near and far for the perfect elegant yet rustic venue. After months of looking without any luck, we realized nothing compared to Gibbet Hill in Groton, Massachusetts. Gibbet Hill is a restored barn that is located in our home town, where our love story began 10 years ago. While the venue is breathtaking, we especially loved that this venue was so close to home and our hearts.

The most special part of the day was being surrounded by our family and friends that have supported and loved us unconditionally. Having been together since high school, this wedding was a long time coming. The energy and excitement of our guests was palpable and we are so grateful for their love.

My goal was to incorporate details from my family members’ wedding days into my own wedding. I wore a family veil that my aunt first wore on her wedding day in 1978 and all my cousins have worn since. I also wore the pearls that my father gave to my mother on their wedding day. My most favorite decoration was a display I created with a picture of our grandparents and our parents on each of their wedding days.

My advice to brides planning their wedding day is “don’t sweat the small stuff.” At the end of the day, the only thing that matters is you are marrying your best friend and beginning your life together.” Enjoy every minute and take the time to soak it all in, it will be the best day of your life!

Photography: Deborah Zoe Photography | Floral Design: Les Fleurs | Wedding Dress: Maggie Sottero | Cake: Konditor Meister | Stationery: Elli | Bridesmaids' Dresses: Nordstrom | Makeup: Amanda McCarthy Beauty | Hair Stylist: Gina Joubert | Band: Men In Black | Groomsmen Attire: Perry Ellis | Officiant: Stoddard H. Melhado (JP) | Wedding Venue: The Barn At Gibbet Hill | Bridal Boutique: Modern Bride | Musician: Lizary Rodriguez | Veil: Family Heirloom

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Whimsical Barn Wedding at Gibbet Hill

One evergreen piece of advice I read over and over is to know your priorities. Really reflect, choose, commit. For this pair, number one was passionate vendors and yummy, locally sourced, food (I mean, the bride founded Nella Pasta). The result, besides total bliss, was one pretty-as-can-be rustic dream wedding, thanks to help from Mstarr Event Design and Megan Braemore Photography‘s lens. See it all here.  


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From the Bride… Jordan and I met during our freshman year of high school and instantly formed a friendship. After 14 years filled with on and off romance, and one adorable puppy later, we finally decided to tie the knot!

We instantly fell in love with The Barn at Gibbet Hill. We wanted a rustic and romantic wedding that truly captured our love story. We always envisioned an outdoor ceremony with an indoor reception at the same location. It had the rustic New England charm we were looking for complete with castle ruins, a rolling countryside and an elegant barn. Most importantly, we wanted a sustainable meal sourced with local and seasonal ingredients. Overall, our goal was to have a truly unforgettable wedding not only for ourselves but for all our family and friends.

We truly enjoyed the wedding planning process. We did a lot of online research to pick our vendors and logged some serious hours on our iPad’s! After scouring websites, blogs, and reviews I knew I wanted a team with a similar entrepreneurial spirit to myself. I started my own food company, Nella Pasta, 5 years ago and I understand the passion it takes to pursue your dream. It was important to us that each of our vendors loved what they did and were actively pursuing their passion because it only makes the end product that much more special. In the end, it was exactly that. Each vendor played a key role in the success of the day bringing their true talents to make our day perfect! We are so thankful for each of them.

With such a beautiful backdrop, we decided to keep our color palette light and neutral with slight pops of color. We wanted a truly romantic and rustic touch so the centerpieces alternated between tiered candles on gold rustic wood and stunning florals. When it was time for the ceremony, the guests were shuttled up to the top of the hill and enjoyed wooden signs we had placed along the ride up with cute sayings that read one thing on the way up and something else on the way down.

We wanted to keep some things traditional so we did not do a first look. Instead, we embraced the anticipation of seeing one another for the first time as I walked down the aisle. We built up the moment not only for ourselves but for all our family and friends. Our bridal party consisted of our closest family and friends from childhood, high school, college, our siblings, and even my mother who stood as my matron of honor. I was a flower girl in my parents wedding so I knew I wanted my mom to also play dual roles in my wedding and stand proudly by my side.

The morning of the wedding, the girls and I enjoyed a mimosa bar and delicious breakfast treats, and we sipped and snacked while getting our hair and makeup done. The boys had it easy by playing 9 holes at a local golf course in Groton!

My advice to all is to just enjoy the process and have fun with it! And of course, take in every second of your wedding day because it goes by quick. But if you have a great team to document the day, it will always be unforgettable!

From Mstarr Event Design… I had been itching for some clients to get married at The Barn at Gibbet Hill. Enter the super sweet Rachel and Jordan who have actually known each other since high school. Rachel is the owner of Nella Pasta, makers of (yummy!) pasta using local and seasonal ingredients so we knew that organic elements would be a major component on the design front. Among other details, that translated to herb escort cards and favors (grown locally by one of Rachel’s colleagues), one heck of a head table with a barn board top  and a lush floral runner, sage accents at the place settings, and reclaimed wood and  candle centerpieces on half of the guest tables.

Gibbet Hill is a truly idyllic setting, particularly its grounds. Rachel and Jordan chose to do the ceremony in the ruins of General William Bancroft’s castle. not everyone chooses this spot, and while it requires transportation for guests (provided by the venue, of course!), let me tell you…it. is. worth. it. You’re transported to what feels like the Irish countryside and that drive up and down the hill was complete with grazing cows brought in specifically for the ceremony and custom wood signs Rachel commissioned from a vendor on Etsy.

We kept the decor simple,  enhancing all that the venue, and time of year, had to offer. My most favorite being were the terra cotta pots for the herbs that we gold leafed. Everything is better with gold, no?

Photography: Megan Braemore Photography | Videography: Chris Walsh Productions | Floral Design: Petal Floral Design | Invitations: Studio Slomo | Bridesmaids Dresses: Dessy Collection By Vivian Diamond | Bridesmaids Dresses: Jovani | Hair + Makeup: Danielle Keefe Artistry | Band: Now And Forevers | Bridal Gown: Paloma Blanca | Bridal Shoes: Louboutin | Bridesmaids' Robes: Silk And More | Ceremony + Reception: The Barn At Gibbet Hill | Design, Styling + Day-of Paper Goodies: mStarr event design | Escort Card + Mr & Mrs Wood Sign Calligraphy: Laura Hooper Calligraphy | Escort Card Tags: Tasteful Tatters | Rentals: New England Country Rentals | Ribbon: Frou Frou Chic | Wood Signage: Rak Design On Etsy

These Vendors are members of our Little Black Book.
For membership information, click here
These Featured Designers are members of our Look Book.
For membership information, click here