English Garden Style Wedding Set in Michigan
October 14, 2016
Al FrescoGlamorousLuxury Venue
You know what I really, truly love about this wedding? These college sweethearts managed to bring an English garden vibe to the bride's home state of Michigan. Think summertime romance set at an elegant manor, with 'maids dressed in the prettiest pink gowns by twobirds Bridesmaid. Amy Carroll photographed and there's much more this way.
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From the Bride...Jake and I have been together for eight years, since our freshman year in college. I knew he was the love of my life as soon as I met him and I could not wait to marry him. We got engaged in New York City, where we live, and always knew we would tie the knot back home in Michigan. While that definitely came with challenges, I absolutely loved planning our wedding. I found our venue, Greencrest Manor, on a photographer’s blog and instantly fell in love. It’s set in the middle of nowhere and out of 200 guests, only a couple had ever heard of it. It was perfect for the casual-yet-elegant garden wedding we envisioned.

The amazing and slightly difficult part about our venue was that we needed to bring everything in, from the tent and tables to the catering. We spent hours doing research online and speaking to different vendors to find exactly what we wanted. It was tedious and time consuming, but we ended up with a team of vendors that we adored. About three months before the wedding we realized we really needed a day of coordinator. Hiring Emily and Claire from Polished Events and Celebrations was one of the best wedding planning decisions we made.

Because we planned from a distance, we tried to keep the DIY projects to a minimum, but thankfully my family helped a lot. My mom is an angel and spray-painted all of our candelabras gold and spent hours at flea markets looking for vintage cake stands and pie plates for the dessert table. My dad made a rustic set of cornhole boards, my sister made banners and a bunch of other decor, my lovely husband attached 150 envelope liners for the invitations, and I spent the nights leading up to the wedding hand-assembling 200 program fans.

One of my favorite parts about planning a wedding was finding ways to incorporate personal details. Our officiant was our favorite professor from college—he got ordained just to perform our ceremony and it could not have been more perfect. Part of my bouquet ribbon came from my mom’s wedding dress, which my grandma handmade. She passed away a couple years ago and she always wanted me to marry Jake, so I loved having part of her with me. My headpiece and earrings were custom-designed by my favorite jeweler, Lulu Frost. She also designed earrings for my mom and sister, which we plan to pass down to our daughters. The donuts and bagels (which we served as a late night snack) came from a bakery Jake used to work at, the cake was made by a childhood friend—I could go on and on!

The smartest thing we did was a first look. We took all of our photos before the wedding, and then as the shuttle pulled up to the venue with our guests, every bride’s nightmare came true—it started pouring. I’ll be completely honest, I was really, really sad at first. But Jake took charge and decided we should start with cocktail hour and see if the rain let up. We had a “grand entrance” down the spiral staircase, ate a few hors d’oeuvres and, thankfully, it stopped raining so we could get married outside.

Even with the rain, it was the perfect day. Our guests had so much fun dancing to the Bluewater Kings Band, our dessert table was nearly empty by the end of the night and it was amazing to spend an evening with our closest friends and family. The dress and Manolos may have ended up covered in mud, but I wouldn’t have changed a single thing.
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