We asked our Bride, Maureen, to be our guest blogger and tell us all about her wedding! We got all the details about her DIY wedding, how they met, and more.
Anthon is from Wisconsin and I'm from Minnesota, yet we met in Santa Barbara, CA (where he was living at the time) through mutual friends at a birthday party. Finding a good quality Midwestern guy in the midst of California was like finding a diamond in the rough! I was living in LA when we met, so for the first two years of our relationship we drove 2 hours to see each other. Despite the distance, we made it work. Anthon moved to LA and the rest is history!
When deciding on a venue, we both agreed on getting married back in the Midwest. We love the outdoors (hiking, camping, lakes, rivers, woods, beach) but also love a big city. We cared about a venue with a nice outdoor area and good views. Having our reception at Nicollet Island Pavilion was truly magical and exceeded our expectations. Lush greenery on the Mississippi River, with a view back of Minneapolis was the perfect backdrop for our cocktail hour and pictures. Anthon is an architect and also appreciated the indoor space of the pavilion, with its exposed ceilings and brick walls.
The ceremony was held at St Mary of the Lake in White Bear Lake. I grew up attending that church, so it had a lot of sentimental value. It was also exciting to have our out of town guests get a taste of my childhood.
My advice to future brides would be to plan far ahead, and to get a day of wedding coordinator! Anthon and I were a team with the planning. It's a lot of work, but we divided up tasks, and made endless to do lists well in advance. This helped us avoid last minutes stressors.
I was on the fence about getting a day of wedding coordinator, but am so relieved we did. She executed our perfect dream wedding and made us (and our families) feel like guests at our own wedding. She did everything from the set up to the tear down, and any mishaps throughout the day she handled without us ever knowing! Apparently during our church ceremony our limo wouldn't start. We had no idea, and luckily when we were ready to head to the venue it was up and running again.
We had fun with the DIY (do it yourself) projects which added a nice personal touch. We were going for a rustic yet elegant look. Our favors were homemade candles, our "guestbook" was a puzzle, and each guest signed a piece. Anthon's mom made our chalkboard signs, and his dad chopped up a tree to make wood slabs to use as the base for our centerpieces.
My best memories of the day are getting ready with my mom and best friends, walking down the aisle, our first dance that I choreographed, and having our closest friends and family all in one place. I've always been a dancer, but Anthon.... well not so much. It meant a lot that he put in so much effort to practice our dance, and it was very exciting to perform it!
People traveled from all over the country and made big sacrifices to celebrate with us. It felt so surreal. Past brides told me "the day will go by so fast!
Make sure the two of you take a few moments to step away from the crowd, and take everything in. I'm sure glad we did that.
Seeing everyone mingle throughout the night and have fun together really warmed my heart. I literally never left the dance floor- even to go to the bathroom! I'm so glad I was able to have an absolute blast. I keep reliving the day in my head and it couldn't have gone any better. I'm so grateful for our outstanding vendors, and that I got to marry the man of my dreams!
Vendors we love:
Wedding Dress: Leanne Marshall from Flutter Bridal Boutique
Day of Wedding Coordinator: Lasting Impressions Weddings
Ceremony Venue: St. Mary of the Lake
Reception Venue: Nicolett Island Pavillion
Photographer: Creekside Photography
Florist: Lakeside Florist
Limo: Renee's Royal Valet
DJ: JMR Productions
Videographer: Better Together Cinematography