Kate + Joe’s Colorful Fall Farmhouse Wedding

We love it when couples take on a theme – like a fall wedding in the country – and make it so wonderfully personal that it knocks our socks off. That’s just what Kate and Joe did with their fresh and colorful big day!

In Kate’s own words: When Kaylan asked me to write a little bit about some of my handmade details for our wedding, I was beyond excited!  I had been planning our wedding for 9 months, but I can’t lie; for months before we were engaged, I already had been nosing around wedding blogs for fun ideas.  I took a lot of inspiration from the beautiful outdoor wedding of Lena Corwin (seen here http://www.marthastewartweddings.com/231732/lena-and-joshua-twain-harte-california/@center/272446/real-weddings).  She has been an inspiring artist to me and her vintage details pulled at my heart strings.  Joe and I knew that we wanted our wedding to be low-key and comfortable.  Everything was held at Joe’s mother, Tami’s, horse farm which holds a farmhouse from the 1800s and a barn full of horses.  We used the front walk to the porch for the ceremony and had guests sit on hay bales from the barn.  The reception took place in a beautiful, large tent in the yard.  We wanted to incorporate some lawn games, a bonfire and make use of the private and open property.

I spent all nine months busy at my desk and in the basement crafting.  I wanted to incorporate the fall season with some pumpkins in our decor.  Pumpkins lined the ceremony aisle and I created stuffed calico pumpkins for the table decor.  I followed this tutorial and used many different floral themed fabrics: http://thompsonfamily.typepad.com/thompson_familylife/2009/11/fabric-pumpkin-tutorial.html.  I also wanted to build on the fall outdoor theme with some homemade arrows and feathers. These tutorials fit the bill and were really fun to make:  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/2011/09/02/diy-fabric-feathers-3-ways/and http://modernkiddo.com/guest-post-danielle-from-thompson-family-life/.

We started the process with save-the-date postcards that were hand stamped and the photograph was taken by my brother Dave.  We wanted them to be special so the photo was taken at the location of our first date, The Oaks theater in Oakmont where we had seen the 1930’s movie Freaks and shared a Sprite. Our min-dachshund, Riggs, joined us for the photo shoot.  All of the wedding stationary has handmade by Joe and I simply on our computer and we used wood-grain patterned paper from Target.  I hand carved some stamps and the pumpkin and arrow theme carried through on the stationary.  Our reply cards were Pantone postcards purchased from Amazon. Easy and fun!

My dress was from Bhldn and I couldn’t have found anything more perfect.  I loved that it looked vintage, it had sleeves and an interesting lace.  The only alterations needed were the sleeve ruffles pulled up a few inches and the hem cut, both alterations done flawlessly by my multi-talented sister-in-law, Marisa.  I added some quirky oxfords from ModCloth since I knew we would be outside and maybe in the mud.  I wore my sister’s necklace as a headpiece, my bridesmaids helped with hair and makeup, and I wore my Grandmother Anderson’s diamond necklace and my Grandmother Beck’s opal ring.  I added my mother’s paisley scarf and a hand-made looking cream sweater I had already owned to keep warm once the sun went down.  My bridesmaids, my sister and two best friends, were patient with me during our search for dresses.  They ultimately wore dresses from ModCloth, J.Crew, and Family Affairs. Each wore a different colored cardigan from ModCloth and we all wore earrings from CGM Findings.   I found superhero pins on Etsy and created boutonnieres for the guys. I loved being able to pin Superman on my dadís lapel.  The groomsmen wore a shirts from Gap with gray pants and suspenders from H&M. The best woman wore a dress from ModCloth.  My nieces as flower girls wore pink lace dresses from Gap and headbands made my their mothers from ribbon and faux flowers. They threw confetti from tissue paper scraps in painted pails.  My nephew was the ring bearer, and although he was too shy to walk down the aisle, he held our rings closely on an antique ring pillow from my mother’s cousin.   Our rings weren’t the traditional wedding bands.  My tiny turquoise and gold ring is from Catbird and Joeís tungsten band was purchased on Etsy.

The bouquets that my sister-in-law, Marisa, had crafted the night before, had blown my mind! I would never have dreamt of such beautiful, personalized arrangements and she wowed us. All of the table florals were a mix of dahlias and burgundy celosia from WholeBlossoms.com and extra bunches of mums and roses that we picked up at the grocery store the day before.  Some greenery was cut from the familyís gardens and added for a hand picked look. I can’t express how happy I was with the florals.  I had also purchased many types of coleus (my favorite plant) online and they had become big and beautiful by the time September rolled around.  We incorporated a tree potting in our ceremony and used a small oak sapling found in the woods at the farm.  We added soil from my mother’s yard and water from the farm.  It was a meaningful symbol to combine out families and homes.  I also had my two sister-in-law read at the ceremony.  My brother Dave cut wood discs for the table decor and made beanbag toss boards for the lawn games.  My uncle Randy hand made the wooden signage to direct guests up to the house.

Our caterer, Rob, was a dear friend from Sugar Catering in Pittsburgh and knocked the backyard barbeque out of the park.  I could have never dreamed it would be so delicious!  All homemade mac ‘n’ cheese, veggie and beef burgers, salads and local corn on the cob were some of the offerings.  My dad even cooked up a batch of hot sausage with peppers.  He also created a bar top for our bartenders.  It turned out great and very useful.   For the dessert table, I glued clay pots and saucers together to hold treats and used vintage paper table cloths to add color.  My mother made mini cheesecakes, families members brought cookie trays, and my mother-in-law baked 10 pies for the desert table!  We also had cupcakes from Oakmont Bakery in Oakmont, PA.   For favors, we had a popcorn bar from Pittsburgh Popcorn (http://pghpopcorn.com/). Guests could fill paper bags with their flavor of choice.  What a hit!

The porch was decked out in crafty decorations.  I made tissue paper garlands and yarn rope garlands.  Tissue poms and paper orbs dangled for a crafty look.  Hay bales were covered in vintage table cloths and bed sheets.  The dance floor had handmade dip-dyed flags and vintage pompom garlands hanging over head.  Vintage suitcases from my aunt collected cards.  Family photos decorated the welcome table and we asked for marital advice for our first anniversary.  The tables were dressed with plastic lace-look table cloths from WalMart, craft paper runners, hand dip-dyed napkins purchased in bulk on Ebay, and small quilt fabric squares as coasters.  We added mason jars for drinking glasses, collected glass pitchers from Goodwill and a close friend for ice water,  and a jar of crayons to color on the craft paper.  Each setting included vintage floral themed plates collected from a friend and Goodwill, faux-silver flatware.  Spray painted jars and bottles held arranged bunches of dahlias, celosia and other colorful flowers.  Fabric feathers, homemade arrows and fabric pumpkins were arranged on the table tops for a homemade, country look.

Oh, and the seating chart- one of my faves. I had sifted through my parents slide collection and labeled each name on sides. I simply washi taped them to an old window and propped it on a easel so light could peer through. It was a joy to see guests looking through each slide and I Ben included some from my parents wedding. It was very personal and tied in my family to our love of photography and preserving special moments in time.

I loved every second of the stress-filled planning for our wedding, but around noon on our wedding day, all of that stress melted away.  I never dreamt I could be so calm and happy in those moments leading up to the ceremony.  I’m normally a nervous wreck in front of a group!  I’m so happy to have put all of the handmade details into our day and wouldn’t have changed it for the world.








Couple: Kate Wilson & Joe Wilson
Date: September 29, 2012
Location: Pennsylvania

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