Diy Farm Wedding By Michelle Nagle Photography

 July 22, 2013

I really can’t think of a better way to start the week than with Andrea and Peter’s gorgeous wedding. If you love DIY weddings, farm weddings or just plain awesome weddings, you’re going to love this one! The wedding took place at a private farm in Michigan and Coeur d’ Alene based Michelle Nagle Photography traveled to shoot it. You’ll find some pretty cool ideas here and you’ll also find a very thorough and helpful blurb from Andrea at the bottom of the post about how she pulled together this gorgeous DIY event. Enjoy!

Peter proposed on a cold Sunday night in February. I immediately began dreaming of a warm, breezy summer wedding! Northern Michigan was a huge pull for us, but we soon realized the challenges of having a destination wedding and how that would affect all the family and friends that we truly wanted by our side on this important day. That’s when the light bulb went off and we sat down with Mama & Papa Mowry (the grooms parents), who just happen to live on the most beautiful farm property just 20 minutes away. With excitement and full hearts they said we could absolutely host the wedding at the farm, and so the planning began…We started with a cold and snowy engagement photo shoot in the field where we would be married with the groom’s mother. Voila! Save the dates were done – and we loved picturing how different everything was going to look in that beautiful meadow in less than 7 months! Mama Simon (the brides mother) immediately got to work on all of the logistics. Renting things that we surely would’ve forgotten until the last minute – tables, chairs, dance floor, tent – you know, the important things! Mama & Papa Mowry got their hands dirty with us, literally! We planted one million wildflower seeds – thanks to the vision of Papa Mowry, it would be the “Wedding of a Million Wildflowers.” Go big or go home 🙂 The groom’s sister Lesley, along with her husband Brian and bouncing baby boy James helped plant sunflower seeds and the garden! Peter and I are lucky to have our lives full of talented and generous artists, craftsmen and musicians! Peter is a musician himself and I am in love with anything and everything crafty. We immediately got to work on our invitations. With some inspiration from, we ordered blank cd’s that looked like vinyl records, and while Peter chose the playlist of “our songs,” I got to work hand stamping the covers. We had a stamp made of a picture of us by the very talented Kozue on Etsy (DearYouFromKozue). With a little help from the Internet I designed the cards to go in the invitations and hand cut and embroidered each one! If you have any urge to do this yourself – plan plenty of time for it! It was so worth it though, we absolutely loved how they turned out. The easy part was my wedding dress. I looked on, found something I thought would work for a farm wedding and done! I knew with a hot wedding in August, I needed something short and airy or I would melt before every saying “I do.” With the help of a peach petticoat from American Apparel and little lace shorts from Urban Outfitters, this was the least challenging part of the planning process! I found beautiful vintage cowboy boots at a shop in Chicago, and all of my bridesmaids and my adorable little flower girl found their own pairs as well. (Because deep down, who doesn’t want an excuse to buy cowboy boots? And what better reason than a farm wedding?!) Back to the crafting! During a visit to Chicago, I was lucky enough to stop in a store called BHLDN. Not only did I find my adorable Rehearsal Dinner dress (yes it had hot air balloons with cute little red heart flags stamped on the fabric…) but I also found a super helpful book for any crafter trying to DIY their wedding. The book is called Handmade Weddings by Eunice Moyle, Sabrina Moyle, and Shana Faust. I used their template for my “Welcome” embroidery hoop that graced the cocktail table, and my incredibly patient and helpful mother dyed over a thousand coffee filters (using tea and food coloring) to make the giant poms that my sister-in-law hung behind the head table. On the way to the ceremony site our guests stopped to sign the beautiful wood bench Papa Mowry put together for us. We love our bench full of so many heart felt messages, and can’t wait to put it in our garden! If they continued down the path, guests could enjoy swinging under the trees on a seat made for two (again by Papa Mowry!) This was also a great photo shoot spot for us! Papa Mowry mowed a beautiful winding pathway thru the trees for all of our guests to walk from the ceremony site to the reception. We hung photographs transferred to wood blocks in the trees, along with some more embroidery and chalk board signs. One of our favorite activities to do at the farm is to play cornhole! Thankfully, Papa Mowry, an elementary school teacher, just happened to have a projector at the farm. We set it up so that Lesley could trace and paint our silhouettes onto the cornhole boards Papa Mowry made! We loved having a fun activity set up for our guests (and us!) One of the most challenging parts of the planning was the food. Not only am I chef, but I am also a picky eater and vegan. There didn’t seem to be a whole lot of options to fit our needs and wants. That is when my best friend from High School, Nina Santucci, swooped in and saved the day! She opened a food truck, The Purple Carrot, the previous year, with her fiance, Chef Anthony Maiale. They have had such success, and we never dreamed they would have the time to cater our wedding. This is when it really pays off to be BFF’s with the owner! They brought their adorable food truck right to the farm and served the amazing food out of it. Tacos have always had a special place in Peter and I’s hearts, and they came up with an amazing menu full of tacos, roasted corn and refreshing summer foods. They even utilized veggies grown right on the farm! People are still telling us how great the food was and how they still dream of it (exactly what this foodie bride wanted to hear)! Now the sweets I couldn’t leave to anyone else. For our guests’ gifts I made shortbread cookies (date pistachio and tiramisu) shaped like the lower and upper peninsulas of Michigan. We tied tags to them with ribbon and twine that had each guests name and their table number. For dessert I made Michigan blueberry pie pops, an assortment of cupcakes and of course our wedding cake, which when cut into showed off layers of our wedding colors, peach & pink. To serve we had a specially engraved vintage cake server and forks for Peter and I. We ordered these off of Etsy by an awesome seller Kerrie Hunziker-Balma (WoodenHive). This isn’t the first wedding this farm has seen. A few years prior, Peters sister, Lesley, married her husband Brian. They began the tradition of planting a tree in the orchard as the family grows. A plum tree on their wedding day, and a cherry tree after their son James was born. After our wedding ceremony my father, Doug and Peters father, Don, planted a Red Haven Peach tree as we all gathered around. We are so excited to watch our family trees bare fruit as the years roll on. Let’s rewind a bit to before the ceremony could even take place. To the week leading up to the wedding. I can only describe this as overwhelming in the very best way. We were overwhelmed by how many of our family and friends showed up from all over the world to the farm to help us put everything together. From painting and hanging signs, to planting, weeding and painting roofs. I wish I could sit here and just list every single name and the amazing way they helped. We could not have had this wedding without our family and friends. And their love and support still overwhelms us. My stepfather, Tom, helped put together the trellace we got married under. My sister Leah and sister-in-law Larissa spent DAYS, arranging all of the gorgeous flowers and bouquets. My ridiculously talented sister Meagann (aka the make up artist) made me look more beautiful than I believed I could. Lesley’s incredibly talented and generous bestie, Michelle Nagle, flew in from Idaho to photograph us for the weekend! All of our siblings and our entire wedding party was by our side helping us set up and get excited. Peter’s good friend and fellow musician, Brian Westrin, married us! My brother, Aaron and sister Katie were always right there to make sure we were ok and to do anything they could to help. My Aunt Mary was our MC and was on top of helping everything run smoothly (even when we were so caught up in the moment and how in love we are with each other we forgot what we were meant to be doing). My dad gave an amazing toast and handed down my great grandparents wedding wine glasses. Every single speech at our wedding made us laugh and cry. It was truly a time standing still, warm breeze blowing, birds chirping, sun shining, laughter echoing, awe-inspiring, perfect day. I hope I have in some way been able to relay the love that envelops our lives. I hope I didn’t forget anything, yet I am sure I did. There is so much that day that we still remember little things 8 months out and smile. We will never be able to fully express the gratitude and love we have in our hearts for each other and for our family and friends.”