I’ve lived in New England for seven years now, and this wedding reminds me why I fell in love with the area in the first place. Summers here are magical and this celebration captured that spirit perfectly, from the colorful hydrangeas to the nautical charm. Rupert Whiteley worked magic behind the lens and I’ll be spending quality time in this gallery, fondly thinking of summer days, as we head into the weekend.
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From The Bride… My husband and I would both agree we never really believed in the “love-at-first-sight” phenomenon…until December of 2011 when we met while working in NYC. Seven months later Tim and I were engaged; one year after that we were married. Now we’re officially believers.
I grew up in Massachusetts where my summers were filled with New England beaches, charming coastal roads lined with hydrangeas, backyard family cook-outs, lobster boils, run down clam-shacks with ocean views, Red Sox games, sparklers and arguably the best fireworks in the country. Though we didn’t know each other then, my future husband, a Colorado native, also spent his summers in New England. His family had traveled all the way from Colorado to the same vacation home in Little Compton, RI since his grandfather had been a child.
When Tim and I got engaged in Newport, RI the summer of 2012 we knew right away that Rhode Island was the perfect location for us to begin our life together. With our wedding date set for 4th of July weekend the following year, we wanted to plan a celebration that would reflect who we were as a couple, honor our families and our heritage, and encompass all of the things we cherished so much about the New England summers we had grown up with.
We fell in love with historical Mount Hope Farm in Bristol, RI immediately and quickly chose the waterside Cove Cabin location as the ideal setting for both our outdoor ceremony and reception. Working with Russell Morin Fine Catering was one of the best decisions we made. Our wedding coordinator worked closely with us to create a menu that invoked memories of backyard grilling, clambakes, and lobster boils, complete with steamed littleneck clams and a New England clam chowder demitasse. For flowers we knew we wanted to go with local choices. Hydrangeas grow everywhere you look in Rhode Island and in abundant colors. We worked with Paula Conway of Conway Florals in Middleton, RI who put together the perfect combination of blue and white hydrangeas for our centerpieces and the bridesmaids’ bouquets. For my bouquet she incorporated white hydrangeas into a delicate blend of blush roses, stephanotis and lily-of-the-valley.
My family is of Irish and Scottish heritage. I wanted to honor my family by incorporating a few traditions into the ceremony and the day. Before walking down the aisle, my sister and Maid of Honor fastened a Celtic knot brooch to my bouquet as a sign of good luck. My mother gave me an Irish lace handkerchief to tuck in my hand. Traditionally, this handkerchief is then sewn into a bonnet for the Baptism of the couple’s first born child. In lieu of a bridal march, I had a Scottish bagpiper lead my father and me down the aisle to the “Flower of Scotland” (the unofficial anthem of Scotland). Thistles, the national flower of Scotland, were woven into the bridesmaids’ bouquets, the groom’s boutonniére and the flower arrangements along the aisle. After the exchange of rings, our pastor performed a traditional Irish hand-fasting ceremony in which fabric or cords are placed over the couples’ hands and a knot is tied to “bind” their lives together. This tradition gave rise to the popular phrase, “to tie the knot.” For our ceremony we chose fabric and cords that had sentimental value to both of us (lace from my mother’s wedding gown, a cord from my husband’s baby sweater, pieces of family tartan, etc.) Friends played traditional Irish and Scottish music before and after the ceremony on guitar and fiddle.
At the reception our guests were greeted with their names on navy blue and white place cards tied carefully to white starfish, which had been carefully assembled by just about every member of the groom’s family in the weeks prior to the wedding. Walkways were lined with silver lanterns and the tables were topped with glass candle holders filled with sand. As a special dessert, we offered guests red lollipops in the shape of lobsters. Despite the record heat and humidity of that weekend, our guests danced the night away while holiday fireworks sparkled in the distance over the Narragansett Bay.
Our wedding was a beautiful blend of traditions, the joining of two amazing families and most importantly the start of our new family and the beginning of so many new memories to come. We are so grateful to all of those who helped us and supported us throughout all of our planning. A special thank you to Rupert Whiteley Photography for so perfectly capturing all of our special moments.
Photography: Rupert Whiteley Photography | Flowers: Conway Florals | Wedding Dress: Nicole Miller | Wedding Cake: Russell Morin Fine Catering | Invitations: Cricket Printing | Bridesmaids' Dresses: J.Crew | Catering: Russell Morin Fine Catering | Hair and Makeup: New Leaf Hair Studio | DJ: Rhythm Productions | Bagpiper: Mike Capone | Bridal Veil: Sarah Gabriel | Ceremony and Reception Venue: Mount Hope Farm | Decorations, Favors And Ornaments: Coastal Coves | Fiddler/Violinist: Caitlin Warbelow | Groomsmen Attire: Jos. A. Bank | Guitarist: Kyle Sanna | Music: Allison Barber | Tent: Newport Tent Company