Even though we had a very small wedding, with only 35 guests, they still new how to boogie! We had a great dance party to end off a great night! I love these photos and all of the crazy energy they capture!
Photos by the incredible Kinsey and Josh Mhire of Kinsey Mhire Photography.
Our reception venue was the pavilion at Olin Park in Madison, WI. The pavilion is available for special event rental from the City of Madison. In order to secure it, we had to enter a lottery in the fall before. With the help of some family and friends who stood in line with us, we were able to secure it as our first choice! The pavilion is an old barn with beautiful wood floors and high ceilings. It was absolutely spectacular.
The main focus of the reception was the food, provided by Blue Plate Catering. They were absolutely fantastic and incorporated our requests for local and seasonal food without raising an eyebrow. They also worked very well within our tight budget.
During the reception, we had toasts from both of our dad’s. Pat also gave a toast. I have never laughed and cried so hard ever! Looking at our photos, it’s good to see the happiness on all of our guests’ faces as well.
We also hammered nails into a wooden box containing a bottle of our wedding wine. The purpose is to put aside a bottle to enjoy at our 10 year wedding anniversary! Of course I messed up the nailing and Pat had to fix it for me. This is pretty standard.
We also signed our marriage license and made this marriage legal!
It was so nice to share our first dance to Sweet Pea, by Amos Lee. It was a little quiet time with just Pat and I. I just smiled and smiled.
Because I spent so much time on the dessert table, I really wanted Pat and I to serve dessert to our guests instead of the hired servers. I was momentarily furious with Pat because instead of the typical dab of frosting, he attempted to shove a whole plate of cake in my face! Luckily I squirmed away – can you imagine my wedding makeup mixed with a plate of buttercream!?
I danced with my dad to My Girl, by the Temptations.
I hope you’re not sick of wedding photos yet! I have another batch to share with you today. These are the photos we took after the ceremony. We took the majority of our photos before the ceremony, because we wanted to spend the first moments of married life surrounded by family and friends, not quickly whisked away to take photos. I’m really happy with that decision, but I do love all of these photos of our family and bridal party.
You can see more of our wedding photos by clicking here.
I thrifted the victorian couch on Craigslist for $99! It also became a part of our “wedding lounge” for the reception. Although I got some raised eyebrows when I asked some of the guys to carry this heavy old couch into the grassy area of Olin Park, I am so glad I stuck with my guns on it! The photo of our family looking down on us is definitely a fave.
Thanks again to Kinsey and Josh of Kinsey Mhire Photography for these stunning photos! They captured our day perfectly and I’m so thankful for all of these wonderful photos that I’ll cherish forever.
I just want to share a few details from the wedding with you. Several of them I’ve already shared in various forms on the blog.
One of the things I’m most proud of is that I made all the desserts for the wedding! I found an old table at Goodwill and decorated it with a string of handmade glittered letters.
One of my girlfriends with infinitely more patience than me stayed at our place late one night and decorated all of these beautiful sugar cookies. I printed our menus out using our home inkjet printer. I bought the fork and spoon stamp and embossed the image. I absolutely love teacups and spent months leading up to the wedding scouring local thrift stores for pretty ones to decorate the tables with. At the last minute, we decided to fill them with flowers we cut from the bush in front of our apartment! Our florals were done by a local florist using flowers most of which were locally grown. We had a teeny-weeny floral budget and I was absolutely blown away by what he did. I decorated the vases with one of my favorite craft items – Martha Stewart’s liquid gilding paint. I cut a circle out of cardboard, turned the vase over and used it to delineate the area that needed to be painted. It was a 5 minute DIY that turned my $.60 thrift store vases into something special.
I really wanted to have a “lounge area”. I found this amazing victorian couch on Craigslist for $99. We were able to sell it before we moved so we didn’t lose any money on it. I looked into renting on and they were hundreds of dollars – just to rent! You can’t see it in the photo, but I found a door in someone’s trash and Pat painted it ‘distressed’ looking and we put it on two crates to make a coffee table.
The gilded disposible plates, gilded cups, and tealights are all DIY’s I’ve already shared on the blogs. Click on the links to be taken to those posts! The huge wine glasses were Pat’s parents are their wedding! The disposable wooden silverware was a bargain buy from Party City.
The homemade napkins were probably one of the most time consuming DIY’s I did. It really took all of my friends, Pat’s mom and even Pat to help to get them done. It turned out to be a massive undertaking to hand sew each napkin and stamp them with our wedding date. I’m so glad I did though! We have a stack of them now and they are an awesome keepsake!
I embossed the place cards and Pat’s mom lettered them. I shared the honey jars, filled with my Dad’s honey, here.
We had an open bar, so to keep down on costs, we offered local beer and a few wine options and two ‘signature cocktails’. By offering only two drinks, I was able to get away with buying a few handles of liquor instead of many small bottles.
Our food was done by Blue Plate Catering. They were absolutely a pleasure to work with. We were very sure we wanted local food to be prominently featured and they created this amazing Farmer’s Market Salad for us. I have a salmon recipe that I absolutely love that my dad has been making for me since I was little. It’s one of my first memories of my childhood, eating that salmon. They recreated the dish perfectly for our wedding day. It was melt-in-your mouth perfect.
Big thanks for today’s post on how to chalk your hair goes out to the talented Anna Lutzke from Be Inspired Salon and the amazing Kinsey of Kinsey Mhire Photography for styling and photo credits! Thanks ladies!
You may have noticed something weird about my hair in all my wedding photos that I’ve been sharing lately. My hair is purple…and pink…and blue.
Hair chalking is an easy way to temporarily add some sass to your look. I absolutely love all of the beautiful shades of pink and purple that tastemakers are sporting on le internets these day, however given my day job, a full purple dye job is not in my future. In addition, I hate what colored hair looks like as it as it fades and grows out. Yech.
DIY Hair Chalking
Art Pastels – I used this set, which is only $10 on Amazon and has free shipping!
Spray bottle (optional)
Start with dry, combed hair. Doing one small section at a time, moisten the ends. You can be fancy and use a spray bottle, but I just dipped my fingers under the faucet and patted the water into my hair. Take the pastel chalk color of your choice and gently rub it on the damp section of hair.
I found it works best to hold the very tip and rub the chalk away from my head. Then I place the entire section I want chalked in my palm and give it another good rub to get the very tips. Continue with as many sections as you desire. The final step is to heat seal with a straight iron or curling iron. You can see photos illustrating the process below!
Things to consider:
- Especially in light hair, this will probably not completely come out in one shower. The pink really likes to hang around – in me it’s about 90% faded after 4 washes. That final 10% takes about 2 weeks to really disappear. If you are worried about this you can skip wetting your hair. Here’s some chalking I did myself the first day and then after a shower:
- Hair chalking does work on brown hair. It’s more subtle, but still really pretty! You can see an example here.
- Don’t blow dry or use styling products on your hair after it’s chalked as it can cause the color to come off or make a mess.
- Once it’s heat set, I haven’t had any problem getting it on my clothes but it’s probably not the best night to bust out that new white silk shirt you’ve been dying to wear!
If you try this look, I’d love to see a photo!
Our ceremony was short and sweet. We were married in Olin Park in Madison, WI surrounded by 35 of the people that we hold nearest and dearest.
Both of Pat’s parents walked him down the aisle. Such incredible people that have raised the incredible man that is now my husband.
My lovely bridesmaids were all Pat’s sisters. I told them I wanted them to wear a short blue dress and left the rest up to them. I know weddings can become expensive not just for the bride and groom, but for the wedding party as well and I didn’t want them to spend hundreds of dollars on a dress they would only wear for a day. I thought this way, they could wear something they already had or at least have a shot at getting something they can use again!
My dad walked me down the aisle and gave me away to Pat.
Pat made the archway out of fallen trees in a park near our house. He surprised me and carved our initials over our heads. So sweet.
A friend did a reading of a poem that I love by Pablo Neruda:
Sonnet XVII by Pablo Neruda
I don’t love you as if you were the salt-rose, topaz
or arrow of carnations that propagate fire:
I love you as certain dark things are loved,
secretly, between the shadow and the soul.
I love you as the plant that doesn’t bloom and carries
hidden within itself the light of those flowers,
and thanks to your love, darkly in my body
lives the dense fragrance that rises from the earth.
I love you without knowing how, or when, or from where,
I love you simply, without problems or pride:
I love you in this way because I don’t know any other way of loving
but this, in which there is no I or you,
so intimate that your hand upon my chest is my hand,
so intimate that when I fall asleep it is your eyes that close.
A friend got ordained online to marry us. He did a wonderful job and it made the ceremony so much more personal. Pat and I exchanged vows we had written ourselves. Much to my dismay, I was so overwhelmed with emotion that I ugly-cried. In solidarity, Pat did too.
There weren’t too many dry eyes in the house!
In a little over 15 minutes, it was all over and done. Boom. Married!