A Boho Wedding on a Private Island in Connecticut

Katie and Simon

katie simon wedding couple
ali + julie

It was a cold, Sunday morning in February when Simon and Katie went for a walk with their dog on the seaside path by their home on the South Shore of Massachusetts. Simon insisted they stop to take a photo with the still sea and white snow as the backdrop. He then dropped to one knee, opened the pup's backpack, and pulled out a ring he'd customized with a friend. Champagne was hidden in the snow, behind a tree, and the rest was history.

The global marketing manager bride and sales director groom set out to tie the knot 16 months later, on June 18, 2016, about two hours away from that special spot—on a private island off the coast of Connecticut. 130 guests gathered on the sunny afternoon for a chic celebration infused with indigo dip-dyed details, leather and gold accents, and plenty of love.

The couple and their families, as well as Ruffles and Tweed, Chocolate Creative Design, and Hana Floral Design, made it a hands-on, heartfelt weekend to remember.

01 of 22

The Save-the-Dates

save the dates
ali + julie

Lucinda Wesson of Chocolate Creative Design was the mastermind behind the save-the-dates. She designed special boxes wrapped with shibori fabrics and printed belly bands with dip-dyed edges, sent with postage stamps featuring the work of Mexican artist Martín Ramirez—in honor of the groom's roots.

Some guests later used that fabric to make pocket squares and bow ties for the big day.

02 of 22

Inside the Save-the-Dates

save the dates
ali + julie

Lucinda conceptualized the pieces so that they would truly give clues to what the wedding would be like, what elements would be incorporated, and also to bottle up the island's charm and atmosphere.

Inside each box's lid was a black-and-white photo from the couple's engagement session on Elihu Island, taken by ali + julie. A dip-dyed save-the-date card featured a digitally-printed bespoke monogram on the watercolor paper, which sat atop white Krinkle Kut with a heart-shaped rock (Katie's father collects them) and local sprigs of greenery nested inside.

03 of 22

The Location

katie simon wedding signage
ali + julie

Katie's cousin told her about a remote island off the coast of Connecticut called Elihu Island. After lots of searching, the couple found it and visited a month after their engagement. Even with three feet of snow on the brisk, winter day, they fell in love with it and knew it'd be the spot they'd become husband and wife, booking Island Farm for their big day.

04 of 22

Dip-Dyed Invitations

wedding invite
ali + julie

The invites were a bit simpler than the save-the-dates, with a classic and clean card outlining the details. The all-capitalized typography was printed on watercolor paper, with deckled edges, that were once more dipped in blue dye. Leather cording bundled the pieces together before they were inserted into large envelopes lined with shibori fabric.

05 of 22

The Rings

katie simon wedding rings
ali + julie

Christen DeLaney of CAM Jewelry designed the engagement ring and wedding bands. Simon and Christen worked together on Katie's brilliant-cut diamond, bezel-set in matte, yellow gold.

06 of 22

Motherly Advice

katie simon wedding mom
ali + julie

Katie's mother advised her to "Put your face to the sun, slow down, and take it all in."

07 of 22

The Ceremony Setup

katie simon wedding ceremony structure
ali + julie

Hana Floral Design added silver eucalyptus, ruscus, and clusters of flowers like protea, garden roses, and viburnum, to an arch of bittersweet vines constructed by the groom himself. It was set on a place the couple called "the love rock," which can be reached by walking through a field of sea grass to a spot overlooking the water.

08 of 22

The Processional

katie simon wedding processional
ali + julie

Katie and her father entered the ceremony as a friend sang "Leather and Lace" by Stevie Nicks—a song the bride has loved since she was a little girl. It was even more symbolic as Katie wore a lace gown and carried a bouquet wrapped in leather. As she approached the guests, she could see Simon's eyes watering as the breeze blew and the warm gazes of loved ones shone on them.

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The Flower Girls

katie simon wedding flower girls
ali + julie

Clad in white gowns and head crowns, the flower girls scattered white rose petals down the aisle.

10 of 22

The Programs

katie simon wedding program
ali + julie

Leather cording and copper grommets held the program booklets together.

11 of 22

The Ceremony

katie simon wedding kiss
ali + julie

The couple embraced (with a dramatic dip, too) at the ceremony's conclusion. "It wasn't planned," Katie notes of the big moment. "We didn't practice, we were just us. Simon took the lead there."

The service included a reading by a good friend of the lyrics to Bob Schneider's "40 Dogs," and ended with an acoustic performance of "If Not For You" by Bob Dylan as the couple recessed. But in between, the duo exchanged vows they'd written to one another, first speaking to each other's mothers—Katie talking to Simon's mom in Spanish, promising to always love her son, and Simon saying his own words to Katie's mother before reciting his vows to his wife-to-be.

12 of 22

The Bridesmaids

katie simon wedding bridesmaids
ali + julie

Katie's bridal party was comprised of sisters and friends, all clad in twobirds dresses tied in different fashions. As for the bride, she donned a Sarah Seven lace gown with a slit to the thigh and carried a bouquet of king protea, ranunculus, sweet pea, clematis, thistle, anemones, blushing bride protea, nigella, and greenery, tied together with leather by Hana Floral Design.

13 of 22

The Bridesmaids' Bouquets

katie simon wedding bouquet
ali + julie

Bridesmaids carried bouquets of thistle, veronica, anemones, clematis, and greenery, bound with dip-dyed silk ribbons made by Chocolate Creative Design.

14 of 22

Dapper Gents

katie simon wedding groomsman
ali + julie

Simon sported a J.Crew Japanese chambray tuxedo and black bow tie, and his groomsmen donned navy tuxedos and blue bow ties from The Black Tux. All of the guys completed their looks with leather-bound boutonnieres.

15 of 22

Escort Cards

katie simon wedding escort cards
ali + julie

A custom copper pipe trellis held dip-dyed escort cards that resembled bookmarks and a sign with the newlyweds' logo.

16 of 22

Cocktail Hour

katie simon wedding bar
ali + julie

During cocktail hour in the gardens, guests chose from a trio of cocktails at the tequila bar and also visited this moss-embellished bar (made by the groom) for wine and beer. As guests made their way over from the reception, the couple's wedding planner took their photos with a vintage black-and-white instant camera before they wrote well wishes to the newlyweds in gold pens on cards to pair with the pics.

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The Tent

katie simon wedding tent
ali + julie

A mix of long tables filled the sailcloth tent, from which rattan light fixtures (which were repurposed in the couple's home post-wedding) hung.

18 of 22

The Place Settings

katie simon wedding place setting
ali + julie

Tables were set with gold flatware and simple white plates. Menus sat atop dip-dyed napkins, tied together with either leather cord or monogrammed silk ribbons. With a mix of tables, the arrangements also differed, varying between low planters of white and blue flowers, all greenery (like ruscus, bay leaves, and olive branches), and small white vases with single blooms. Each of the tables also boasted a different runner—some dip-dyed and others with a shibori print.

19 of 22

Special Touches

Peach, Green, and Gold Tablescape
ali + julie

Modern, gold table numbers and plenty of white pillar candles added to the ambiance.

20 of 22

Time to Dance

katie simon wedding first dance
ali + julie

The couple chose Otis Redding's "That's How Strong My Love Is" for their first dance. Everyone joined them on the dance floor until the last song of the evening—"We Bid You Goodnight" by the Grateful Dead.

21 of 22

A One-of-a-Kind Lounge

Marbled Hexagonal Sugar Cookies
ali + julie

A geodesic dome set with eclectic furniture, rugs, and pillows offered a quiet spot for guests to relax—and a good place for the couple to take some time out together during the night, look at their loved ones celebrating, check out the stars, and reflect and feel the love. Another lounge area boasted some of the couple's chairs, which had been reupholstered in fabrics (like an African mudcloth) that tied into the day's décor.

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katie simon wedding couple
ali + julie

Photography, ali + julie

Location, Island Farm at Elihu Island

Event styling, planning, and coordination, Ruffles & Tweed

Catering, B&M Catering

Flowers, Hana Floral Design (personal flowers and overall floral supplier); Chocolate Creative Design & Susan Dzyacky (table floral design)

Videography, Forged in the North

Stationery, event stying, and décor, Chocolate Creative Design

Music, Matt Chase; Power Posse Productions

Rentals, Rentals Unlimited; Sperry Tents

Bride's gown, Sarah Seven

Bride's Reception Dress, Stone Cold Fox

Hair, Posh Salon

Makeup, Jennie Fresa Beauty Bar

Bridesmaids' dresses, twobirds

Groom's tuxedo, J.Crew

Transportation, First Student

Restrooms, United Site Services

Wood wall in reception tent, Chocolate Creative Design; Something's Hiding in Here

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