Wednesday, September 5, 2012

A storybook wedding....

It's taken me a lot longer than I anticipated to get this post done.... first, just catching up on my sleep took a bit and then I kind of struggled with how I wanted to share this day.... so after writing one post I decided to change it up and give you the "pretty" first... then I'll share the "nitty gritty" with you all... and yep, there was some "gritty" involved!  But for today... it will be the storybook version!  If you have been following "Wedding Wednesday" or even Red Gate Farm on Pinterest... well, you probably will remember some of what you will see here... a few things we planned had to be scrapped, but that's another story for another day....

Welcome, as a special guest, to my daughter's wedding.... Red Gate Farm style... a fun sun welcomes you... a sign made of pickets rescued from my son's home.

The beautiful blue sunny skies we'd enjoyed for weeks had given away to a gray day, fortunately no rain kind of day... and the view is still spectacular!

Yes, the big day has arrived... and so have you...

First perhaps you would like to find a spot to drop off a gift... or a card in this vintage train case...

Or sign the "guest book"?

The guest book wasn't a standard book but actually a tree with paper leaves... each guest or family should sign a leaf.  A wonderful memory for the bride and groom to hang in their home as newlyweds.... of course we removed it from the frame after this photo so that you can sign your leaf!
The six photos in white frames are of the parents and grandparents... actually their wedding photos... (Mine is the second from the right, if you're wondering....)

Perhaps you'd like to wander a bit while you wait for the ceremony to start?

And decide upon your seat?  Sides don't matter here....

Don't forget a program... another vintage suitcase makes the perfect spot to hold your program...

The programs were made as fans, in case of warm weather... but I don't think you'll be needing a fan today!

You may notice the jars of flowers down the aisle... just like we imagined... full of white zinnias from my garden as well as some purchased white dahlias.

And the altar?  It was simple and just what the bride wanted.

Of course the builder, Mr Red Gate Farm, couldn't help but tweak it a bit when installing it.  Some of the wood used wasn't quite straight enough for him and he had to fuss with it a bit.

The hydrangea topiaries?  Well they made the 2 plus hour drive plus ferry ride in one piece!  Not one broken branch or crushed flower!  And they were a gorgeous shade of green, just perfect!

And in case you're wondering... the fabric attached to the altar is actually 3 curtain panels from IKEA.... at $5 a pair you couldn't beat the price at a total of $7.50 for the whole thing!   And if you look closely you can see the boat that the bride and groom will be leaving the reception aboard to head to Port Ludlow.  How fun of an exit is that?

Oh, and what is going on down below on the beach?  Well the bride and groom had chosen to have a "first look" session with their photographers.

The bride of course is wearing her hot pink boots for the beach!

But enough of our spying on the happy couple... it may be time to head back to our seat...

And admire the flowers one more time.... and you may notice that they are not hung on the chairs along the aisle but on chair back height sheppard hooks.  I don't like to be the person in the chair with something hanging from the back and taller hooks can block the view of the bride and groom!

And speaking of flowers... the bride's bouquet is certainly breathtaking...

And the boutonnieres for the men are too fun... the florist incorporated hops (the green "flower") at our request since the groom is a beer aficionado and home brewer as well...

The groom's aunt is the officiant.  She is doing such a fantastic job, what a wonderful memory.

A glimpse of the entire wedding party.... the best man is the groom's father, the maid of honor is the groom's sister and the groomsman to the far right is the bride's sister.

The bride and groom wrote their own vows... and exchanged their rings in Swedish (the groom) and Norwegian (the bride) to honor their Scandinavian heritages.

And the kiss!

And then it's time for the happy couple to make their way back up the aisle as Mr & Mrs!

Now that the ceremony is over and you've had a chance to dry your eyes, perhaps you would like a refreshment while the bride and groom have more photos with their families?

We have a great selection...

As well as coffee to ward of the chill (yes even in August!)...
That cute purple pomander was made by the bride... using a styrofoam ball and tons of crepe paper and hot glue!  The plan of multiples quickly dwindled to just two!  The fabulous vintage crate is full of milk glass coffee cups... and has "White Rock Soda" printed on the side... the name of the town (in British Columbia) where the bride's paternal grandmother and maternal great grandmothers grew up!

And it wouldn't be a celebration without paper straws!

So pick a glass...

And fill it up! Er, as soon as I fill the dispensers with iced tea and lemonade that is!

But perhaps you were hoping for a more adult beverage?  Well, we have those too....  so pick your poison.

And then just mosey on up to the bar... and help your self to a small snack of local peanuts while you wait for the bartender to serve you...

And don't hesitate to check out the decor and signs sprinkled around....

After all, the chalkboards were planned as a big element in the decor....

With beverage in hand perhaps you wish to find your table?

The chippy shutters were hinged together to make a fantastic place card holder... find your name...

And table number...

I hope you can find your table... there are quite a few of them....

Everything looked just as planned with the bud vases, zinnias, taffy favors, napkins with tags and thrifted collected silverware!  The help I had setting the tables followed my specific directions to a "t"... for which I am very, very grateful!

We economized on the paper lanterns since we were running short on time to hang them... but that is a story for another day!

And do you spot a familiar face or two on this bottle of soda?  Yep, that is the happy couple's engagement photo.  One that was taken right here at Red Gate Farm.  Of course the flavor is grape (purple)!

And speaking of the happy couple... you may notice that the bridal party table was created with family in mind...  The "s" and "k" that I found last spring a top a stack of vintage suitcases...  And milk glass vases line the table for the bride's bouquet... as well as the bridal party bouquets.  You may not see it from where you are standing but the bridal table has the bride's great grandmother's silverware to use for dinner...

And I should note to you that the bride made this fantastic sign... something to keep and hang after the wedding... she became quite the chalk artist.... and maybe you recognize this chalkboard and frame too?

A cute little "mr" and "mrs" to mark their spots...

Huge dinner plate dahlias from my garden... held in a vintage silver teapot, sugar and creamer that belonged to the bride's great-great grandparents... a vintage lace tablecloth made by the bride's great grandmother... and of course, a bottle of champagne to toast with.

The chairs couldn't be left unadorned... a few ribbons, a couple of vintage pillows and a big purple "&" sets the stage...

Above their heads you may notice the cluster of rose covered lanterns...

And maybe while on your little tent tour you noticed the plethora of candy in the corner?  A little bit of sweetness to have now...

Or share with your table mates....

Or even to take a bit home?  Do you see the picture in the back?  Well it's the bride and groom's cute little dog, Freyja.  Since she couldn't be part of the ceremony (she was on a doggie vacation) she was here in picture form....
And maybe you noticed the vintage lamp complete with rose, ribbon covered shade?  I used a couple of vintage lamps... and so that they didn't need to be plugged in I used small LED battery operated lights from IKEA... just wound them around the existing light bulb and flipped the switch.

OH, but wait... the DJ is making an announcement....

Introducing the new Mr & Mrs to the crowd... and nope, she doesn't get those blue eyes from me.

Now that the bride and groom are here... well it's time to eat!  And do we have a fantastic spread for you to enjoy... everything is cooked on a huge grill/smoker that the caterer pulled in.  And when I say everything, I mean everything was cooked here!  The mashed potatoes, bread and obviously, the meat!  The bride and groom made a great selection when they chose the menu and the caterer....

And if you're looking for a little more sweetness after dinner?

You'll find it here at the cake table...

You can't really see it in the photos but I draped another sheer IKEA curtain behind the "table" and strung purple and green ribbons to jazz up the tent wall a bit... more dahlias in milk glass... with a tinge of purple on the edges.

And that little item I promised to show you long ago?

Well I used a set of vintage cake toppers, a mini glass dome, vintage sheet music and ribbon.... and lots and lots of glitter.  Sort of a keepsake "cake" if you will for the bride and groom to take home.  And you'll notice that the music is for "An Apple Blossom Wedding"... how appropriate!

Although guests like you are offered a choice of fabulous cupcakes... the bride and groom did have a cutting cake made of purple velvet... a special request of their baker instead of red velvet.... The dresser came in handy as a cake table... we could even store the extra cupcakes in the drawers for the necessary restocking!!

You'll also see the Kransekake, Scandinavian celebration or wedding cake, under the chalkboard sign...  a traditional cake made of almond flour that tastes heavenly (if you like almonds).... and tucked in the drawer are more little take out boxes... just right for you to take a cupcake or two home!

And after the bride and groom cut the cake?

Well it's time to move the "love" on...

To the dance floor and the first dance as husband and wife... to a Brad Paisley song...

After the bride and groom there were the traditional dances... father and daughter... son and mother... and then the anniversary dance.  All married couples are invited to the dance floor... then the DJ starts counting up the years until the longest married couple is left... the bride gave her bouquet to the couple instead of the "toss"... it turned out to be my parents who celebrated their 52nd anniversary this summer.

Since the guests really packed the dance floor after this, you probably will be going home with some sore toes... but I must say I think I loved this the most.... the sheer joy of everyone having such a wonderful time on such a special day.

So we'll leave you with thanks...

As the bride and groom board their little boat and head off into the sunset... or out to "sea"... or at least Port Ludlow...

I'm pretty pleased with how everything turned out, so much as planned...  As we were going through the ceremony and reception it didn't seem real... after all the dreaming and scheming... to see it in "real life" seemed so surreal, in an absolutely FABULOUS kind of way,

I must give a HUGE thanks to the groom's aunt, Jan.  Not only was she a big help but many of the photos here are her photos!  I didn't take very many, one of my many faults when I plan and set up anything... I forget to stop and take pictures!

linking to:



Potpourri Friday


French Country Cottage

Feathered Nest Friday



Wedding Sources
Melisa Draper Photography - photographer
Botankial - florist (wedding party bouquets and bouts)
Mike's Four Star BBQ - caterer
GenXPro - dj
Sweet Life Cakery - cupcakes and cutting cake
Hi Hoe Nursery - topiaries, plants
Pike Place Market & of course, Red Gate Farm - cut flowers
Perfect Partys - rentals for tents, chairs, tables, plates, glassware, linens, dance floor
Pottery Barn - "i do" silver frame, beverage dispensers, hanging rose globe lights, white candles
IKEA - lanterns, candles, purple curtains, arbor curtains, white ceramic pots
Luna Bazaar - paper lanterns, battery lights, paper parasols for bridal party
Linen Tablecloth - purple tablecloth overlays, chair bows/ties
Paper Source - invitations and rsvps, paper, satin ribbon (purple and off white), personalized stickers for take out boxes and taffy favor bags
Michael's & Joann Fabrics - green satin ribbon, battery candles, chalkboard paint, canvases, misc craft supplies
Williams-Sonoma - jars and candy
David's Bridal - bride's dress, brides shoes, bridal party dresses
Men's Wearhouse - grooms, groomsmen, father of bride suites and ties
Jones Soda - personalized soda
Sugarman Candy and Haggen Grocery - candy
Shrivers - taffy
Fishes Eddy - set of three matching replica milk glass cake pedestals
Grandiflora Home and Garden - glass candy jars, pearl garland, wire frames, purple taper candles, purple and green candles, replica milk glass votivse, vintage items - white suitcase (set of three), grey shelf, chippy drawer, white dresser, misc. pieces of milk glass
More Than Antiques, a store in Lynden, WA - shutters, "i do" letters, large milk glass cake stand, milk glass lamp, misc. pieces of milk glass, vintage sheet music, milk glass coffee cups
Second Chance Thrift Store - much of milk glass bud vases, silverware, picture frames (for chalkboards, folding luggage rack, vintage glass lamp,  milk glass coffee cups

owned and family items
silver tea set, lace tablecloths, white wooden stool, vintage wood folding chair, bridal party chairs, brown vintage suitcases, vintage frames, vintage bisque wedding cake topper,


  1. Whew finally, I kept waiting for this post! But it was definitely worth the wait! Everything looked just beautiful Chris! You put some much love into all the little details. It will make you smile everytime you think of this lovely day. Best wishes to the bride and groom for a happily ever after! Now go get some more rest, you deserve it!

  2. The waiting,"to see" was worth it. Beautiful bride, handsome groom . . . loved every little detail . . . lovely indeed! Now I am going back to look again!

  3. Everything looks so lovely! I hope you get to have a nice long rest now ;-)

  4. What a beautiful and sweet wedding!! Such the loveliest and charming touches! xo Heather

  5. gorgeous pics :)
    It looks that this wedding is very successful and memorable. I was really entertain with the pics and reading the details of the wedding.
    Congratulations and best wishes!! :)

  6. (the groomsman on the far right, that's my brother)

    Love getting to see everything again, of course :)

    1. OOPS! She's right... it would be her brother the groomsman! I'm pretty sure he appreciates the "catch" Krysta!

  7. Chris.. what a great day.. full of beauty and love and family and friends and all your pretty decorations and collections. Bravo! ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

  8. omgosh...everything is just gorgeous. I can't even imagine how much hard work and planning was involved in putting all this should be proud of yourself!

  9. Thank you for inviting us to join in. Wow, what a fantastic wedding! It is fun to see things that you shared with us along the way..the before and after frames and the flower garden your thrifted finds, all of your dreams came together so beautifully. Congratulations on helping to make your daughter's wedding such a huge success. xo

  10. Very pretty! All of your hard work and special touches came together beautifully.
    I am tired for you!
    Congratulations to the bride and groom :)

  11. Congrats! It was great to see all of your "Wednesdays" come together for a beautiful event. Your daughter and her dress were beautiful too!

  12. WOW Chris!!!!
    I'm on my way to work and don't have time to take it all in, but I'll be keeping this page for at least a year!!!! What an amazing job you all did...absolutely stunning!
    If you're still up for loaning/renting some things out I'd love to take you up on it...and to pick your brain for what worked, what was worth it, what wasn't, timing, etc.
    What a wonderful day!

  13. Wow! You need to go into the wedding business! What a fabulous wedding! I love all the chalkboard signs, and the fact that you grew so many of the flowers. You did an amazing job!

  14. Oh my gosh, what a creative affair! The chalkboard signs were genius! Your dahlias were just stupendous. Best of all, happy bride and groom. Congrats on a really spectacular wedding. Hope you put your feet up for a few weeks after that big accomplishment!

  15. So many wonderful, meaningful touches. Lovely, just lovely.

  16. Everything looks absolutely gorgeous! I hope you can use many of the things in your house now!

  17. What a charming all the card shutter display...programs...well I really love all of it.


  18. Gorgeous! Thank you for sharing the fabulous wedding pictures at Potpourri Friday!

  19. That is certainly a storybook wedding! Beautiful bride, gorgeous setting, a boat escape, fabulous vintage touches! Think my hubs will re-marry me so I can do it like this!?

  20. What a beautiful wedding! So many details. Love the signs. The brides dress is lovely. Thanks for sharing!

  21. Chris: What a lovely wedding. Everything was so beautiful and turned out just right. Love the dining tent with the paper lanterns overhead and the couple walking on the beach. A beautiful setting and handsome couple..Thanks for sharing and inviting us to the big day..Happy Wednesday..Judy

  22. Weddings, weddings, weddings, what a lovely day when you are to get married. The tables, chairs and their arrangement looks fabulous. You can also try beautiful, used wedding chair covers here. A story to tell in the future.

  23. what a beautiful beautiful wedding! congratulations to the happy families and the newlyweds.

  24. So perfect in every way! I am just overwhelmed at the gorgeous detail you took the time to showcase. So many couples could benefit from seeing this post!! J and I went to wedding about 2 years ago that just SCREAMED, "WE spent tons of money", on this weeding and reception! There was nothing personal about it at all. And the bride and groom were...are you ready..2 hours late! Guests were leaving :(
    The other wedding we went back to Florida for, (long-time friends)was a total debacle. No one told us it was a "beach wedding" August, in south Florida! No mention of this in the invitation! It was literally on the beach at 6pm. HOT. The wedding party, groom and bride were all dressed casually and barefoot. We and several other couples were dressed for an evening wedding, as it was being held at a 4-star hotel. Not for the beach! Hubby had a suit on.
    I could write a whole post about these two weddings LOL!!!
    I am serious, you should turn this into a book on how to make a wedding a reflection of the couple and spend the cost of a car!

    I look forward to your next post about it.
    Thanks so much for sharing this journey with all of us :))
    xo, misha

  25. Wa, it look like that you have an unforgottenable experience in your wedding occasion. Eerything looked just beautiful with bridal jewelry set and pearl necklace.But if you also wear pearl drop earrings would be more perfect.

  26. Great wedding. For all of you still planning your special day, check out for the best table linens online.

  27. Good post! I think this is very useful!


  28. what a beautiful beautiful wedding! congratulations to the happy families and the newlyweds.

  29. Now, look at me, super late to the party! Chris, this is absolutely best of the best!! The setting, the details (amazing), and the beautiful couple. I love it all!! Now, I don't know how I missed this wonderful post, but so glad I finally found it :) Also, how I ended up here tonight: Pinterest! I saw someone had pinned a big galvanized tub of sunflowers and it looked kinda familiar to me. Sure enough, I said "I know her!" :)
    So after all that, I really want to say a belated congrats to you and your family! -Tammy

  30. The images are rich. I have got so many new ideas for my approaching wedding. Really your pics gave me innovative ideas and thoughts. I hope my wedding will be always memorable and rich.
    I like that when a bride keeps folding hand fan and parasol in her hand as it looks very stylish and gorgeous. I love these stylish parasols from Just Artifacts
    I wish you congratulations and my best wishes!

  31. I love Brad Paisley for the Bride & Groom dance<3 And how about that view for the ceremony. Bride and Groom are adorable! So many great ideas! My daughter is gathering wedding ideas. Sharing these with her; the family wedding photos, the bouquet to the longest married, all the creative and romantic signage. You should be a wedding planner! Pinned


Please, feel free to leave a comment... it really makes my day! Chris