Hooray for Friday! I can’t imagine a better way to jump start the weekend than with a sunny, DIY wedding by Annie McElwain Photography. We have seen a lot of love birds themes around here but never one that was pulled off quite as sweetly or as perfectly as this Virginia beauty. My favorite part? Probably the two lovebirds at the center of it all whose infectious smiles will have you grinning all the way to Monday. See more of these cuties and all their fun details in the full gallery!
From the bride… Our amazing friends, Bill Crews and Judy Kelley offered their home as our venue out in the country of VA. The moment we saw it we knew this was it. The gorgeous civil war home/property was enough to stand alone but my creative wheels began turning immediately. It felt appropriate to have elements of antique/southern/country…unlike my typical more contemporary/modern style. My maiden name is Robbins so we wanted to incorporate birds somewhere along the way– so we decided on a love bird’s theme. I’ve always been one of those people that sees something and says “hey I can do that myself for much less” so that’s pretty much how this whole day happened.
I rode in on my dad’s white truck… adorned with yellow lanterns, homemade pillows, a white carpet and sitting on an antique church pew. At the end of the ceremony we also rode back out on the edge of the truck bed, holding an old antique “Just Married” sign (painted by me). Our aisle was created by wrought iron stands (for hanging planters) which hung yellow glowing lanterns. We decided that instead of making the day disjointed by having one area for the wedding ceremony and another area for the reception, we would rather create an intimate space for the entire day to happen. We created a dinner theatre-like setting, where all guests sat at their table, separated by an aisle, and watched the wedding from there.
We were having an evening wedding and wanted to create lighting for the guests while also continuing the flicker of the stars above us, so we created our own centerpieces (which was much cheaper too!). For the centerpieces we took a weekend and went to the country to hunt/cut tree branches/twigs. My dad was a huge help in this effort. I literally rode in the back of the truck (the same one that later became my chariot!) with a bed FULL of tree branches. We (my dad, my “coordinator”/family member Susan Stringer, my mom and myself) then cut the twigs to size, spray painted them all white, and set them in planters with plaster. Later we made our own votive wire hangers (this was cheaper than buying pre-wired votives) and hung them on the branches. Finally, the morning of the wedding, Susan glued hundreds of real flowers all over the branches to add color. We added water above the plaster in the planters and used some floating candles for additional light. I have to say they turned out so perfectly! During the “day” part of the ceremony, the tables were bursting with our yellow accent color. Once the sun came down for the reception it looked like fireflies flickering across a huge field under the moon! We also made 3 HUGE versions of the centerpieces (taller than us) in order to create an alter behind us. We were surrounded by flowers and candles while creating a backdrop that flowed seamlessly from the tables.
We had a blast making everything ourselves and saved literally thousands of dollars doing it!
Wedding Venue: Wayne Oak Plantation / Bride’s Dress: Nicole Miller / Bride’s Hair Piece: Ann Leslie Designs / Bride’s Shoes: Betsey Johnson / Bride’s Jewelry: Nicole Miller / Hair: Erin Backer / Bridal Bouquet & Boutonnieres: Rochette’s Florist / Cake: Cake Kitchen / Catering: Walter Johnson at Thompson Hospitality / Rentals: Awesome Party Supplies / Bridesmaid’s Shoes: Vince Camuto / Bridesmaids’ + Flower girl’s Necklaces (and my one bridesmaids-man brooch): Zafirenia Maridaki / Flower Girl Dresses: Gabriella Rocha / Flower Girl Shoes: Lands’ End / Favors: Custom stamp made Love to Create Stamps / Groomsmen’s Ties: Express / Groom’s Suit: Howe / Officient: Reverend Angelo Chatmon / Invitations + Guestbook: Inviting Moments / Programs: Kims Custom Gifts / Wedding Photography: Annie McElwain Photography