“Jessica and Jeff were married in a rustic lodge located in Eureka, MO with around 60 guests in attendance. Both the bride and groom worked together on this down to earth, DIY wedding. They had a square dance caller and a bluegrass band for entertainment. For dessert they had pies; the couple provided some premium pies and their guests were encouraged to bring their special family recipes. The new Mr & Mrs even helped to cut and serve the pie for all their guests. The bride’s father had passed on so she had him close to her in the form of a heart cut out of one of his blue sweatshirts and sewn into her dress. The couple even had props for all of the guests to be photographed in, which made for a terrific group shot.” – Oldani Photography
What is your favorite wedding day memory?
There were so many wonderful moments that day. We did a ‘first look’ which was great because it allowed Jeff and I to spend most of the day together. But, I think having two of our friends play guitar and sing “Pecan Pie” by Wilco while we sliced into our pie was probably my favorite.
What did you DIY for your wedding?
Basically everything! We had a florist make the flowers for the bridal party, but all the other flowers and decorations were DIY. I had great helpers! My mom and some very good friends all helped me bring my ideas to life. Most of the pies at the reception were homemade by friends and family as well.
I had a lot of fun gettin’ crafty! The inspiration was rooted in the old time square dance, which tied in nicely with the burlap and lace trend. Chalkboards and the “J &J” was an easy theme to use throughout as well. I have always loathed the traditional guest book and knew I wanted something more interesting. I saw a ‘wish tree’ on Pinterest and decided I could make one. I bought an old watering can at a flea market for about $20 and used branches from a Birch tree in our back yard. I stamped the wish cards with our initials and tied the hanger ribbons in our colors, then made a chalkboard sign so guests knew what to do with the cards. I think I made 5 or 6 small chalkboard signs, one for the wish tree, one for the bar, one as a ‘thank you’, one with the dinner menu, and one for the favors. I found unfinished chalkboards at JoAnn’s and used wood stain on the pine frames, and a chalk pen to write out the messages. That took about an afternoon to complete and cost around $30. I didn’t want to spend a lot on table decorations, I knew I wanted candles all around and flowers of some sort. I had family save all their glass jars of different sizes, plus I had quite a few old mason jars already. I did buy about 20 more mason jars on Craigslist for $20. I fell in love with the look of Babies Breath for flowers and it’s super affordable. I ordered it in bulk from Sam’s Club for about $100 and had more than enough. We just made simple bouquets in the jars and put candles in some of the other jars. I had tied jute bows around all the jars ahead of time. It was probably about $160 for all the table decorations. My mom sewed burlap table runners for all the tables, and a really pretty one with ruffles for our ‘sweetheart table’. The burlap cost around $75 and it took her a couple days of sewing to complete them. She also made our heart shaped ring bearer pillow out of burlap and embroidered “Reed” and our wedding date onto it. It now sits in one of our living room chairs. I made some burlap and doily bunting/banners for the pie table, they only took a few hours to make. I ordered the doilies on Amazon as I couldn’t find vintage ones for an affordable price, they were around $25. For the pie table, I bought several glass cake stands (some new, some vintage) for around $100 total and borrowed a couple as well. I was also able to reuse some decorations my girlfriends had made for my shower – some tulle bunting which we hung around the fireplace, as well as a burlap “Let them Eat Pie” sign they had made for the shower. I really wanted galvanized washtubs for the bar and was going to purchase them on Craigslist for about $175, but the Universe smiled upon me – a neighbor had set some out on the curb for free! That was an amazing find. For my ‘something blue’, I had my mom sew a heart-shaped piece of my deceased father’s old blue sweatshirt into the bodice of my dress. That idea was 100% Pinterest, and it was nice to have something of my dad’s with me, yet it was private at the same time since most of the guests didn’t know it was there. It was a special way to connect with my dad on that day. I have to say though, my favorite DIY piece by far was the pies. Pie is big in my family and several of us love to bake them. My original plan was to bake all the pies myself, but as the day approached I quickly realized there was no way I was going to be able to pull that off! My cousin, an uncle, an aunt, and a dear friend each made 2-3 pies to contribute and we ordered a few from our favorite pie shop in town. Having all the homemade pies was really special and helped make the day feel more relaxed. Everyone that made a pie said they thought it was really fun to contribute to our day, and it added to that old time feeling we were going for.
Something old, new, borrowed and blue?
Yes. My something new was my dress. My something old and borrowed was an etched gold bracelet of my mom’s. It was my favorite to play dress up with as a little girl. My something blue was a heart shaped piece of my deceased father’s sweatshirt sewn into the bodice of my dress.
Any advice for brides currently in the planning process?
Keep it simple and only execute the ideas you feel strongly about. And stay within your budget! – Jessica, the bride
Photographer: Oldani Photography // Venue + catering: Experience Wyman // Florist: True Lei Floral // Pies: family + Pie Oh My! // Officiant: John Clark // Music: Down Stream Duo and Dug Out Canoe // Brides dress + accessories: Clarice's Bridal // All decor, seating chart, table numbers, favors, guest book, and more: DIY