First and foremost, I want to give a huge thank you to our wedding vendors. From our venue, to catering, to our tuxes, to our bridesmaids gifts, every detail was perfect, and we felt so loved. We cannot thank you enough. A compiled list of our vendors can be found on the main wedding page here on the blog.
I guess the best way to take you on this ride is chronologically. BUT, if I include every detail of the wedding planning process you’d be here for like ten years. So, let’s make it the short + sweet version, k?
December 14, 2020 is one of my favorite days of my life. That chilly evening, right after I turned 23, Hayden took me on a date to Allerton Park in Monticello, Illinois to walk through a beautiful Christmas light display. We stopped for hot chocolate from Dunkin’ of course, and headed into the park. As we entered a gorgeous tunnel of glistening lights, Hayden popped the question! It was so special, and romantic, and I felt so treasured by him. He made sure my nails were done, and even hired a photographer to capture the moment. The pics make me cry every time! Thank you to our friend, Cole Aden for the amazing photos that capture the raw emotion, and excitement that evening held. I am so thankful for the memories we get to have forever.
Now, let’s get down to the details.. THE RING! This ring was made by the incredible MJ at Anye Designs. MJ is truly gifted, and creates the most beautiful pieces of jewelry. Hayden and I had been looking at engagement rings for months before we got engaged, and we knew I would want something unique. Hayden did so well picking my ring, and I am so in love with it. Girls, tell your boys to work with MJ for your engagement ring. She offers custom rings, and a huge selection of pre-designed rings. My ring is a 3.5 carat peachy-pink morganite stone in a pear shape. It has 1 carat of diamonds on the halo, and the pavé. Here’s what my ring looked like right after he proposed, eeeeep! I have more photos of the ring with my wedding band, and Hayden’s wedding ring from our wedding I will share later on.
After about a week of soaking in the engagement, we started planning our wedding. My best advice for engaged couples before planning your wedding is to come up with your theme, rather than colors, and CREATE A LOGO. Having a theme and a logo for your wedding makes everything feel so chic, so high-end, and very classy. Luckily, I know a super hot graphic designer (he just so happens to be my husband), and he created a gorgeous logo for us incorporating our letters.
The inspiration behind our wedding theme and decor was the Justin and Hailey Bieber wedding. We loved how simple, and stunning it was. When I looked at their photos, I knew I loved the heavy greenery, white flowers, glass, dainty decor…. ya know? The works. I feel like we were able to capture that inspiration while making it totally “us” if that makes sense.
As I think about the wedding planning process, I just remember so many things that felt like little miracles, and gifts that God so graciously gave us. We were truly so blessed by the people around us, and we never could’ve made our wedding day happen without God opening the doors of opportunity for us. I won’t go into the details of the how we came about each of our vendors, but literally every vendor felt like a gift from God. I always say “if I hadn’t believed in God before, I would now”, because truly y’all… He was working OVERTIME on making sure this wedding happened when and how it did.
Let me start with our venue, then we will talk rehearsal dinner, getting ready, ceremony, reception, bridal party gifts, and our honeymoon.
A sweet couple at our church has the most gorgeous land at their home, and we were able to get married on their property. It is huge, so well taken care of… the vibes were *immaculate*. I remember going out to their property and seeing acres of beautiful grass, and dreaming of what we could do with all of that space for our big day. There were two sides to the property, so we used one side for the ceremony and one side for the reception. One of the millions of things I loved about using their property as a venue was that we had access to it for the entire week to set up. I knew I would be a bridezilla if I knew the entire wedding had to be set up in 2 hours the morning of. I felt so relaxed, and had so much fun with my friends, and family spending the week setting up with them.
Our rehearsal was so fun, and the dinner was INCREDIBLE. Our photographer, who we will get to shortly, Alisa Greene, captured these photos of us at our rehearsal before we left for dinner. We are so thankful she came to our rehearsal. The dress I wore is from Lulus, but it isn’t sold anymore. 🙁 But, here is a similar style from Lulus! My favorite part of this outfit was my shoes. They were also from Lulus, and they were my “something blue”. Again, they aren’t sold anymore because I am a few months late writing this post because… #life. But, I loved how feminine, and sweet these shoes were for this event. I have the most similar pair linked here. They are basically the fall version of the same shoes!
We went to a restaurant called Silvercreek in Urbana, Illinois for our dinner. My mother-in-law had it all set up with beautiful photo frames, and custom napkins, such sweet details that made us feel so loved. Silvercreek is amazing, and if you are local to Illinois, I would definitely recommend having your rehearsal dinner there, too! 🙂
Alright, y’all… Head over to Part 2 for Wedding Day Details! Woo-hoo!