Our wedding honored our faith and radiated the love of our families and friends, who so givingly devoted themselves to us throughout the process and the day itself. My sisters were my maids of honor, and Eric’s twin brother was his best man. One sister, a cosmetologist, got up at 5:30 to get ready so she could spend the whole morning doing my hair and makeup. My brother was one of Eric’s groomsmen and Eric’s sister was one of my bridesmaids. Both our dads gave amazing, tear-jerking speeches. My three adorable little cousins were the ring bearers and flower girl. Our bridal party came from as far as San Antonio, Texas! We felt so blessed to be surrounded by (almost) all the people who are important to us.
We were married in Portland, Oregon, at our church building, a large, transformed warehouse. We worked with the feeling of the church’s décor, which mixes raw natural pieces with industrial-feeling elements, a combination we loved and that was perfect for our vision. We are both artists, and wanted our wedding to be representative of us. I was worried about filling such an enormous space – it seats 1,000 people and we had around 200 – but with the huge room dimmed and lighting left mostly to candles, the space became astonishingly intimate. The dim lighting turned the focus to the stage and dramatic elements like long birch tree curtain panels hung from the very tall ceiling, candle-filled gutters along the sides of the aisle, and large arrangements of bare branches and bold, unusual looking flowers. Our lone stage floral spray consisted mostly of tall black pussy willow and forsythia branches. I was stunned to see how it all came together and filled the space so well. Everything was basic and bold, making a dramatic, but not flashy, statement.
Because I was between undergraduate and graduate school, I was able to take on lots of DIY projects in preparation for the wedding. I loved doing this, as it saved money and made everything more personal. Eric and I designed all our paper products, including save the dates, invitations, labels to put on bags of local coffee beans as favors, and 6-page square booklet programs that I sewed together with my machine. I sewed the fabric flower in my hair using lace cut from the bottom of my wedding dress during alterations. Instead of coffee beans for the kids, we assembled bags of jelly beans and included children’s names on the bags to avoid mix-ups and overindulgence. :]
Our standing reception felt like an art show, with people walking around conversing and drinking espresso from two catered carts. We played instrumental, beat-driven songs by Eric’s favorite indie bands. Yours Truly Caterers served an amazing bite-sized hors d’oeuvres spread, along with our special request, crepes with chocolate hazelnut butter and bananas. YUM. Our guest book consisted of two large pieces of canvas hung on a bare wall. Guests wrote and drew on the canvas with multicolored paint pens. There were lots of children in attendance, which we loved. My mom, a former 2nd grade teacher, set up a craft table where kids could glue tissue paper blossoms to paper branches on card stock. We showed a video in which my roommate and her fiancé interviewed Eric and I separately about each other; it was the first time either of us saw it, and it was a huge hit with everyone. My two beautiful sisters both gave speeches and then surprised me by singing “Sisters,” from the old movie White Christmas. I laughed and cried continually throughout the afternoon – it was perfect.
We completely treasure our antique rings (pictured). They are one-of-a-kind, and we can rest knowing we didn’t bring new diamonds into the country. Eric’s band has several different colors of gold inlaid in designs of roses and even a cherub, and it has initials and a wedding date from 1880 engraved inside. My rings are from 1940 and 1960.
In addition to everything I’ve mentioned, one of my favorite memories of the day was catching my 4-year-old cousin, one of my ring bearers and probably the cutest little boy in the world, peeking into the room where the girls were doing hair and makeup (pictured).
Rings from Gilt Vintage and Artisan Jewelry, giltjewelry.com
Caterering by Yours Truly Caterers, yourstrulycaterers.com
Photography by Tyler Gould, tylergouldmedia.com
Dress by San Patrick, sanpatrick.com
Dress from Anna’s Bridal, annasbridal.com
Bride’s shoes by Jeffrey Campbell, jeffreycampbell.com (purchased at Nordstrom)
Tuxedos by Joseph Abboud, josephabboud.com
Tuxedos from A Formal Affair, http://www.aformalaffairtuxedo.com
Groom’s shoes by Aldo Shoes, aldoshoes.com
Coffee for favors by Stumptown Coffee Roasters, stumptowncoffee.com
Flowers designed by Lynda at City Flowers and Interiors, www.cityflowerspdx.com
Bride’s Hair and Makeup by Lauren Murray (email me for contact info)
Wedding held at Solid Rock church in Tigard, Oregon, ajesuschurch.org
[images from Tyler Gould]
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