Megan and Dan had a novel idea — use their love of books as inspiration for their wedding! This eclectic, laid back couple exchanged vows in an outdoor ceremony followed by a picnic table reception at Heritage Hill Historical Park. DIY projects and vintage items along with various decor found on Etsy made this bride's dream of a homemade, outdoor wedding a reality. Read on to see more from Megan about their special day, especially their full budget breakdown.
Check out more incredible details from this book-inspired outdoor wedding in the full gallery here, all creatively captured by photographer Kaysha Weiner.
From the Bride:The colors were the first and easiest thing for me to decide upon — love the color green. Ever since I was little, I would stare at trees and plants and foliage and wonder at all the different shades of green and brown and how they worked together and played off of each other. I hate things being matchy-matchy, so initially, the colors were just "all shades of green" with some brown.
My husband loves the color purple, so we added that in, which worked perfectly, because my family is very proud of their Scottish heritage so we had thistles and also dried lavender for the bridal party. I also added a peachy-orange because I love monarch butterflies, which my family and I associate with my mother watching over us.
Our wedding had so many points of inspiration, that it is hard to even trace the day back to a single theme or idea! I am a middle school English teacher and both my husband and I love to read, love books, and love fantasy. We also love nature, animals, and trees. We are also very eclectic and laid back. I also knew Etsy would be a huge part of all my wedding purchases, because I buy most everything from Etsy as it is! So basically, our inspirations were nature, children's literature, fantasy, libraries, Etsy, and, most importantly, family and friends.
One of my favorite memories from the day was getting to the park and seeing all my decorations put up by my friends and family was one of my favorite memories! That was an amazing sight to see! It looked better than I had imagined. I was so touched and amazed at how many people showed up to help set up and how beautiful they made the already beautiful venue.
Another was seeing my big brothers and my nephews wearing full dress kilts as I peeped out of the adobe where I was hiding till the ceremony! I cried. I knew one of my brothers was wearing the Ross clan kilt, but I had no clue that the other boys were going to, as well.
This is going to sound funny, but another was watching our loved ones do a swift and epic cleanup of all the decorations was amazing! It really hit home how hard everyone had worked to give my husband and I such a special and amazing day. We didn't have the budget for a full service wedding, and we could never have had such a beautiful, quirky, special, and creative day if the people we loved hadn't been there to make it happen.
We were the last people to leave our wedding site and I would have liked to have had more of a "grand exit". I tend to stress about things and I would have loved zooming off from the wedding site and not having to worry about anything.
I also wish we could have gone on our honeymoon right after the wedding! I remember seeing the Steve Martin version of "Father of the Bride" when I was little and have always wanted to head out for my honeymoon from the reception, but my husband was starting a new job shortly after our wedding so we had to postpone it. We are getting our dream honeymoon to England on our 1st anniversary, instead!
Photographer: Kaysha Weiner Venue: Heritage Hill Historical Park Hair & Makeup: Katie Fate Caterer: Crepes Bonaparte & Simply a Soiree Dress Designer: Saja Bridesmaid Dresses: Amanda Archer Flower Girl Dresses: A Bushel and a Peck Wedding Rings: Peaces of Indigo Hair Pieces: Which Goose Bridesmaid's Bouquets: Faye Marie Invites: Blackberry Graphics Cookies: Queen Bee Cakes Custom Stamp for Escort Cards: Rebecca's Whims Placemats: Gray Living Poms: Pom Love Garlands: Handmade, Montclair Made & BHLDN Flowers: DIY | Cake Topper: E'lyssa Zuer
The total of money spent on vendors (including my dress) was under $6000. By doing the wedding as a brunch, and doing it at a historic park with a picnic area we saved money on extra fees, lighting, table and chair rentals, etc. We spent about the same amount each on food, our venue, and the photography — between $1200-1300. We had a Craigslist purchase of around $500, which got us all our runners, and vases, and vintage bottles, and cake table supplies, etc.. Dan's suit and shoes were probably about $400, total. Our rings totaled around $600 (Etsy!)
Everything else was made by me or by friends and relatives or gifted to me or borrowed...or culled from around the house or purchased on Ebay, Etsy or thrift stores, with resale or future usage in mind. I would say our wedding total was roughly around $8000-9000 when it was all said and done...after we budgeted the big stuff, I wasn't as meticulous at budgeting as I possibly should have been...but everything was paid in cash and we had no wedding debt, which was the best gift to ourselves that we could give.