While Cory and Danielle always knew they wanted a country style wedding, and despite wanting to make sure their special day was fun for both themselves and their guests, they weren't very keen on spending thousands of dollars on one single day of their lives. Thankfully, this happy couple was surrounded by friends and family who graciously offered to help make their dream wedding a reality!
With the Mother of the Bride filling the role of Event Designer, Cory and Danielle hired the talented Lanfranco & Co to coordinate all of the details. Be sure to read on to hear more from Danielle about their special day, especially how they kept on budget. Check out the full gallery here to see all of the amazing details in this rustic country wedding, all magnificently captured by Kimberly Carlson Photography.
From the Bride:
My mother should have been an event planner — this woman spent 9 months of hard core wedding planning and making projects and crafts for our wedding. Once we came up with a budget and then said we were going to have 300+ people at our wedding, everyone laughed at us, but we knew it was do-able! We could not or would not have had our dream wedding without everyone who helped put our wedding together.
It was hands-down the best day of our lives and we wouldn't have wanted anything different. From homemade food to a handmade wedding dress, I must say we were blown away by how everything turned out perfectly. Every single detail was made or put together with love, and that made it so much more special. We all had the best time dancing and there were so many laughs. The best advice that I can provide any bride is to use connections around you, be thankful for the help you get and be patient.
The only thing I wish I would have done a little differently was not rushed our pictures. We had an amazing photographer and so many photo ops, but I was more worried about my guests and their time at our wedding over our time taking pictures. The best thing I did at our wedding was hire a photographer (Kimberly Carlson Photography) and a videographer (Cameron Fries) — it's worth every penny and every bride should have one. So much goes on on your wedding day that the bride and groom miss. Watching it all and seeing the photos makes you re-live that special day!
Get a closer look at this rustic country wedding by watching the wedding video from Cameron Fries below.
Read on to see how the bride kept this rustic country on budget.
Regarding the budget, we said we didn't want to spend more than $15k and we didn't! The hardest part was going to my dad and my mom (since they are divorced) and asking them what they were willing to do to help. So, what we did was present them with a A, B and C list with our choices. We said "List A is our dream wedding, this is ultimately what we want, but we know financially it may not be realistic. This is our B option, our wedding would still be amazing, but we know we could cut corners in these specific areas." Then had them determine what they could/wanted to help with financially. This helped give them an understanding of what we wanted, what they knew they were going to face and deal with and potentially spend, etc. So we broke it down and split it up. We created an excel spreadsheet and categorized the columns:
• Plan A column — We listed anything and everything we knew that would cost money ... from the venue, to tipping people, to bridesmaid gifts, to flowers, to our shoes, etc.
• A column indicating who was paying for what (my mom, dad, grandmother, who was offering their service, etc.)
• Expense column— with the amount it would cost us (whether it was free or full cost)
• Deposit column — it was easy to lose track of what was already prepaid or deposited
• Question/comment column — For example: Under the venue row, since it was outdoors we wrote "Do we need a generator, what is the lighting like, will we need heaters, are there enough bathrooms, etc."
I uploaded this into a Dropbox account and shared it with my family so we could go in and keep track of everything and update it. This was SO helpful. And it adds up, fast! We cut corners in every way, but it's important to tip the people who are offering their services at a cheap price or even as a gift. Planning a wedding is a lot of work, and even more work on the vendors. I also used The Knot book for a guideline, it was very easy to let time pass us by. We had 9 months of an engagement and the day after my engagement we started on our guest list — which was the hardest and most difficult process of the entire thing (also the most changes), however, during the "in between" months we laid low thinking we got a lot done in the beginning, then all of a sudden it's 1 month before the wedding and there was so much to be done. I couldn't have done it without my family and our wedding planner. Even though it's pricey, it's worth having one — it's too much stress!