DIY Greenville Wedding from Our Labor of Love
November 26, 2012

As someone who is a self-proclaimed non-DIYer (my crafting skills are most definitely lacking), it never fails to amaze me just how talented all of you SMPers truly are.  It's the reason I find my jaw dropping on a daily basis - and this Greenville wedding has me gasping big time.  A true labor of love crafted by the bride and groom (+ a team of downright talented family and friends), it's moment after moment of seriously amazing, vintage-inspired details with a St. Germain kick.  Add in a gallery of beautiful images captured by Our Labor Of Love and saying "I Do" never looked so good.  See it all here.

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From the Bride... It’s funny how one little thing can lead you down a rabbit hole in the process of planning a wedding, but that’s exactly what happened with me and a bottle of St. Germain. Not the liqueur itself, per se, but the brand’s beyond-compare packaging design. My lifelong best friend (who was also my matron of honor and is now my sister-in-law) always has a bottle of St. Germain in her home bar, so I’ve admired the gorgeous design for years. And finally, one day early in my own wedding planning process, it finally dawned on me: I wanted a celebration that looked like a bottle of St. Germain. From there, with the help of sites like SMP and Pinterest, it was all too easy to find more inspiration than I could handle! And while I don’t consider myself a particularly trendy person, the effects that Downton Abbey, Boardwalk Empire and Baz Luhrmann’s approaching remake of The Great Gatsby have had on pop culture did make that 1920's glam tone easier to attain than expected.

That said, our bank account looks nothing like that of a privileged Fitzgerald protagonist, so hiring a wedding coordinator was out of the question, and we had to cut corners in the classiest ways we could think of. And since my husband and I both grew up on very rural farms, planning a “Great Gatsby meets the Great Outdoors"-inspired party wasn’t really in anyone’s wheelhouse. But we have phenomenally talented friends and family who kept reminding us that “it takes a village,” so we took them up on it! My graphic designer best friend helped me design the invitations, and we hand-cut the paper and paid a small studio fee to letterpress them ourselves. My dad, who’s both an artist and an avid hunter, made all our wayfinding signs, a whole host of tree stump cake stands and two antler chandeliers and also contributed hundreds of gorgeous turkey and pheasant feathers for the arrangements and bouquets. My mom, mother-in-law and wedding party helped with DIY projects such as the metallic crepe photo backdrop and mixing our pre-made cocktails, and our extended family and family friends baked scores of desserts — everything from bourbon pumpkin caramel cheesecake to ginger sweet potato cake with brown sugar buttercream. I even managed to pull off a lavender honey goat cheese cheesecake myself.

We had the wedding and reception on my family’s land, and instead of working with a florist, we saved hundreds of dollars by making the bouquets, boutonnieres and table arrangements out of wheat from my family’s fields. I collected most of the gold/copper/bronze/mercury glass decorations from thrift stores and used free things like naturally beautiful buckeyes, acorns and hickory nuts as fillers. And I got hundreds of free wine corks from a very kind wine shop owner (sometimes all you have to do is ask nicely!) and used them to make giant garlands, which we then combined with twinkle lights. As the SMP experts will tell you, DIY doesn't always end up being the most time-efficient or cheapest route to your dream wedding, but it definitely makes it special. It was amazing to feel like our wedding day wasn't just a celebration of us, but a showcase for the talents of all our nearest and dearest. I'd do it all over again!

Wedding Photography: Kendrick Brinson + David Walter Banks of Our Labor Of Love / Wedding Venue: "Uncle Keith's Pond" (The Bride's Family Campground) near Greenville, Illinois / Event Planning + Decor: DIY / Floral Design: DIY / Hors d'Oeuvres + Dinner Catering: Amy Costa of Gasperoni Italian Foods + Marcoot Jersey Creamery / Desserts: The Bride, Friends, Family + Jo Mama's Signature Sweets / Wedding Invitations: The Bride + Audra Hubbell Graphic Design / Printing: Spudnik Press Cooperative / Band: Soulard Blues Band / Rentals: Signature Event Rental / Wedding Dress: Badgley Mischka via Saks Fifth Avenue / Bride's Shoes: Miss L Fire / Bridesmaid Dresses: Their Choice / Groom's Suit: Alfani via Macy's / Groom's Shoes: Allen Edmonds / Groomsmen Attire: Their Choice