28
Nov 2013

Rachel + Donnie

Beautiful and Simple Wedding in the Woods with a Ceremony by a Pond

Rachel says they wanted a rustic camp feel with budget friendly inventive DIYs for their wedding. With this location in the woods, the ceremony by the pond nearby, and all the homespun crafts with texture and color, I guess those two had their dream wedding! So you may now take your shoes off and relax, because I guess that’s the best way to enjoy the images below. Photography by Amanda & Nate Howard for The Shalom Imaginative.
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Donnie and Rachel wanted a place that wasn’t the typical wedding venue. A place they could make their own. The wedding took place on September 7, 2013 at Camp Nawakwa, Lac Du Flambeau, northern Wisconsin, USA. Here are a few stories about the wedding from the bride:

My wedding dress didn’t fit. I never thought it would happen to me but it did. Big wedding dress shops had a one month turnover to complete the job of putting in a lace up panel.  I found a lady out of her home who did it in one night and half the price!
Another humorous thing is things will not go according to plan. We had a unity jar in our ceremony that the wedding party was to write a special message.  Well the jar went missing so we had to skip that part of the ceremony, but someone delivered it down to the beach before it was over!

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Name one thing you regret…
One thing we regret. Finding a food caterer that cared about our day, as much as we cared about it. They were an hour and a half late!
Not sleeping in the morning after our wedding or just enjoying coffee by the lake with just the two of us. Donnie had to run in town and get donuts. Even though that wasn’t coffee by the lake, donuts are a close second.

 

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… And one thing you’re really happy about/ proud of. 
How much our families pitched in to help decorate, organize and make the day possible. Whether it was putting on table cloths, painting signs, or cutting pies, all hands staying the weekend at the camp were willing to help!

 

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The word of the photographers.

Donnie & Rachel wed in the midst of the Northern Wisconsin woods at a Summer camp. Every last detail designed & crafted with their hands. The whole day shouting their personality.
Our favorite part of telling their story was how open they were with us. they were fully present in their day. they laughed with us. cried with us. & told stories of when they first met & jumped in puddles together. the day burst with beauty & life.
More beautiful pictures of this wedding can be found on the photographer’s blog.
14
Nov 2013

Cynthia + Arnaud 2

French DIY Forest Wedding – Part 2

If you haven’t been here this morning, then you’ve missed part one of this forest wedding. Don’t look any further, you need to see part one first. My sister already said a lot of things about her wedding, so maybe it’s my turn now. It was a lot of fun preparing this wedding, though I may have done a bit too much, I don’t know… you tell me!! Photography by Mait Jüriado.

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You may see tarps on some pictures, you know, those plastic sheetings… It rained. And, it was freezing. It’s actually funny: I took a few days off before the wedding to get the place ready and the whole week, there was a beautiful warm sun. We were sitting there in the late afternoon the whole week, thinking “What a beautiful light we’re gonna have at this time of the day!”.

We’re not stupid folks, I mean, wedding in the woods, end of August, France…. the chances that the weather was going be kind were small. So we booked some tents, you know, just in case. But until the previous day, the weather forecast was sun + hot, so we cancelled the reservation!

On the Saturday morning, we woke up to a grey sky, and I’m not maintaining any suspense here, it just got worse; the guests were supposed to arrive at 5pm, it started raining at 4. Fortunately, by the time it was 5, it stopped, and we still could have the ceremony outside! It wasn’t only misfortune though, as the sky was mostly threatening but barely any rain drops fell in the end.

Besides the beautiful rays of sunlight we did not have, rain didn’t waste the day. The other problem we had to face, as if risk of rain ruining everything wasn’t enough, was the cold. My mum had a brilliant idea though: my grandmother used to knee lots of sweaters for us, and my mother thought it would be a good idea to bring them all, in case the people staying late would end up feeling cold (just a lesson learned from our own wedding!). We didn’t imagine we would need them at 8pm, but still, we’re happy we had them. And the good thing is, there was a chimney that we thought it would be weird to use… Well, it wasn’t at all!

 

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There’s another particularity in these pictures: wolves. I guess you don’t see that very often at weddings! The whole wolves thing was actually decided very late. Everything started from a joke between the photographer Mait, my sister and I. When she accidentally said she wanted wolves at her wedding, I kept thinking how I was going to make an allusion to that joke when I finally had an idea.

I think it took me a few reassuring & supporting phone calls before I had the courage to expose my plan to all the guests… I had the feeling it was either super cool or super lame but I didn’t know exactly which one of the two it would be. The idea was to make the most possible guests wear a wolf mask and learn a choreography to Michael Jackson’s Thriller song. But that’s not it. They would have to hide somewhere in the forest without my sister and Arnaud noticing, and then slowly approach as the music began, to be on the dance floor precisely for the beginning of the choreography. Ahem. I was impressed by how many of them thought the idea was good!

I won’t lie to you though, it looks great on pictures and all, but nobody knew exactly what to do (even me, who was supposed to lead the group!), we couldn’t see through the mask holes, which clearly didn’t help, and didn’t make it to the dance floor the first time! But it was so much fun!!!! And it doesn’t look that bad on the pictures, doesn’t it?

 

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You can see even more pictures on the photographer’s blog here.

14
Nov 2013

Cynthia + Arnaud 1

French DIY Forest Wedding – Part 1

This is it! I’m finally showing the pictures of my sister’s forest wedding! It’s always hard to make a selection of the pictures I receive, it’s even harder when you’re emotionally connected to them. So just this once, I split the reportage into two parts; this is part one, part two will be released this very afternoon! Now, about this wedding… so many things to say! I think I got involved in the planning and design more than for my own wedding, which makes the “wedding blues” (the thing you feel when your wedding’s over and there’s no wedding related stuff to care about anymore, some of you may know!) even harder. Actually, I was pretty sure that night that I would end up going to bed at 11pm: when everything was finally going well without my help, I thought “ok, mission accomplished” and then suddenly realized how tired I was! But fortunately, coffee exists, and helped me make it through the night! Anyway, nothing of this matters, as my greatest reward was to see Cynthia & Arnaud stressless, enjoying their day just the way I wished they would. All those pictures were taken by Mait Jüriado, who kindly came to France to shoot this wedding.

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The wedding took place on August 31, at the Soultzerkopf, in the East of France. I really like to hear cute stories from the couples I feature. I love this particular anecdote, that happened a few weeks before Cynthia & Arnaud actually started dating. From the bride:

10 years ago I went to England for an internship. In my first days I had to concentrate really hard to understand everybody. So when my line manager introduced me to Arnaud, I actually thought he said something like “Alnoud” and just added it to the list of the unusual names I heard there. The following weeks, every time I ran into him I said “hello” and he replied the same. Until the day we met again at the canteen/work restaurant. He came over and astonished me by talking in a perfect french. Which I complimented him about (in french, thought it would be nice). And to which he responded a bit stunned “Well, yes, I am french!?”… World class champion, even more when you know that Arnaud was famous for his strong french accent…

 

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Name one thing you regret…

Arnaud decided to have a tailor-made suit for the occasion. During our first visit to the tailor—months before the wedding—we got all excited, choosing between hundreds of different fabrics and discussing the best cut. But then, over the weeks, it was a lot of trying on, and even a few days before we left for the wedding there were still considerable alterations to make. Most of them were taken care of and the suit looked great as it was but there were still some details needed to be fixed and we didn’t have the time for it. So the whole tailor-made experience was disappointing for us, Arnaud regrets he didn’t go for a standard suit in a trendy shop. And we would have saved some stress and money as well!

 

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… And one thing you’re really happy about/ proud of.

We were so glad to see that all our closest friends and family arranged to travel to the far end of a deep forest to attend our wedding. And if getting married wasn’t something really important to us until a few months ago, we are so happy we did it. It’s just the perfect occasion to have everybody we love around us. Why have we waited so long???
And it was such a luxury not to have to worry about a thing. Everything was under control, but not our control! We really appreciated our friend Paul designing us the best invitations we could imagine and it was absolutely fantastic to have Joana deal with every detail of the organization (with Marcio not far away – yes, the same Marcio that designs super high-level websites can also draw super high-level signs). We only realized afterwards all the huge work she had done. The day of the wedding we had zero stuff to worry about and fully enjoyed each moment… Priceless! So we definitely did very little for our wedding, and well, we can totally live with that!
But if we haven’t done a thing, what could we possibly be proud of? And that’s it actually. We are so proud we had someone WILLING to do all of these crazy beautiful things for us. That’s definitely something to brag about. THANK YOU! It was pure awesomeness.

 

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To be continued… (To hold on until then, you can check the photographer Mait’s brand new website.)

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You May French Kiss the Bride is a creativity-stimulating website for crazy-in-a-good-way photographers and couples. We are Joana and Marcio and we think you’re the best. Be in love. Be yourself—and let it spill over the web!

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