A Floral Wonderland Was Created in Record Time for This Micro-Wedding in Wisconsin
Fate and sports both had a hand in bringing Brittanie Chmiel and Tyler Fromm together in 2016. "We met at a going-away party," remembers Brittanie. "I was outside with some friends playing hockey on a homemade ice rink, when I accidentally shot a puck at his head—just missed it. We have been together ever since." Two years into their romance, the pair got engaged, and the bride took on the wedding-planning process all by herself. "In the beginning it was amazing!" Brittanie exclaims. "I have had just about every person I know tell me I should be a wedding planner. I love dreaming up ideas and colors and themes to see what would be best. I am a person that when I decide on something, I go full throttle. But when COVID-19 hit, I started struggling."
The couple's initial vision had them celebrating at a historic hotel with about 150 guests amid a floral wonderland. "We held onto hope probably until about a month or two before our wedding," Brittanie says. "Literally the day after we had sent out our invites, we had to cancel our original event. I spent over two years planning my wedding, but because of COVID, I planned three [alternative] weddings in under a couple of months. We had multiple venue and vendor switches, and I spent every second I could trying to plan the perfect wedding that had now gotten derailed." Finally, the bride found a venue that stuck—an Italianate-style property that could accommodate the pair's trimmed-down guest list.
"The first reason I picked this venue was because it was gorgeous," she says. "It has about eight differently styled rooms that you can take photos in. Secondly, because it was available!" With her image of a floral fantasy still intact, Brittanie worked closely with Milwaukee Flower Co. to fill the various spaces of their venue with blooms. Peonies, delphinium, roses, and ranunculus blossoms were arranged with miniature roses, forget-me-nots, and beautiful blue clematis flowers. "Don't let go of your vision!" advises Brittanie to other brides. "When COVID hit, I was worried I would lose that original vision. Thankfully, in the end, the only thing that had to change was my guest count. I kept my floral wonderland dream, the dress, the design—everything. It was definitely very different, but still very gorgeous and I'm happy I put my blood, sweat, and tears into this day. As long as you have love, it is still possible—just never lose hope."
The couple's invitation suite from COQUI Paperie featured a color palette of soft white, pale gray, and steel blue; the main card boasted an illustrated floral-wreath monogram, plus hand-deckled edging.
The Ultimate Shopping Experience
Brittanie opted to have a custom wedding dress created for her big day. "My shopping experience at Ultimate Bride in Chicago was amazing!" she says of the process that produced a chic gown of Chantilly lace with a lovely crystal-embroidered leaf motif. "I worked with Amanda at the bridal shop and she helped me every step of the way. Not only did they contact the designer halfway through the dress being made for a liner change (which Lee Petra Grebenau happily did), but Ultimate Bride sent me photos of my finished dress when I couldn't visit during COVID-19."
The bride's ankle-strap shoes by Badgley Mischka featured sparkling crystal embellishments.
An Unforgettable Bouquet
Brittanie's lush bridal bouquet was overflowing with peonies, delphinium, roses, ranunculus, miniature roses, and forget-me-nots, plus clematis from the florist's cutting garden.
A Beautiful Bridal Party
Bridesmaids donned elegant gowns in a candlelight color by Hailey Page; their bouquets reflected Brittanie's, sans the shade of blue.
The groom wore a custom three-piece suit by Ticknors Men's Clothier in a not-quite-navy blue. His white button-down shirt was texturized, and his belt and dress shoes were a subtle shade of cognac.
A Calming First Look
Brittanie was very excited and emotional before her first look with Tyler due to the long, stressful road to their big day. "I actually had to do our seating chart while I was getting my hair done!" she says. "So for me, finally putting on my dress and walking to my future husband, it all finally felt real." A sense of calm enveloped the bride after the moment, and she was happy to hand off the rest of the event logistics to her team.
Spaced and Safe
Inside one of The Covenant at Murray Mansion's bright white rooms, carefully spaced ceremony seats were arranged with the pandemic in mind.
After walking down an aisle lined with abundant blooms to an instrumental version of "Can't Help Falling in Love," Brittanie exchanged vows with Tyler before a white fireplace adorned with an asymmetrical design of lush flowers.
"We actually wrote [our vows] together, deciding what we wanted our marriage to be about, and then shared those vows during our ceremony," says the bride.
A Moment in Time
Brittanie and Tyler spent some time together following the ceremony while guests were treated to two signature cocktails: "The Dashing Groom" (complete with Makers Mark, house-made cola syrup, Bittercube Cherry Bark Vanilla bitters, and an expressed orange peel) and "The Blushing Bride" (a rum blend of Bacardi 8, RumHaven coconut, pineapple juice, orange juice, cranberry juice, lime juice, house-made grenadine, and Angostura bitters). Attendees also enjoyed flutes of Champagne that were displayed on a board accented with flowers.
Tyler and Brittanie rejoined their loved ones after portraits—and kicked off the celebration with a glass of Champagne.
A Flower-Adorned Reception
The ceremony space was flipped during the interlude, gaining even more flowers in the process: The room was lavished with blooms, including peonies, delphinium, roses, ranunculus, miniature roses, forget-me-nots, and clematis arranged in brass vessels and situated on wooden tables.
Gauzy runners ran the length of reception tables festooned with flowers.
A Seat at the Table
Tyler took care in seating his bride for the reception by pulling out her vineyard chair for her.
The bride and groom shared a 20-year-old bottle of Dom Perignon during their party, drinking from crystal flutes trimmed in gold.
A Sweet Switch
They asked a last-minute favor of Mia Stav Cakes, when they realized their first cake by another bakery had missed the mark. "I contacted my other dessert baker and begged her to make me one, since there was no way the first cake could be used in photos," says Brittanie. "Thankfully, she said she would be able to do something simple, which in the end, ended up being gorgeous." The tiny cake featured stacked tiers with a two-toned, textured buttercream finish.
Sips and Smokes
Tyler and his friends took a moment together to indulge in cigars and whiskey.
A "Lasting" Memory
Brittanie and Tyler took a spin to the song "A Love That Will Last" by Renee Olstead as they hit the dance floor for the first time as husband and wife.
Photography, Kristina Lorraine Photography
Venue and Catering, The Covenant at Murray Mansion
Event Designer and Coordinator, Brittanie (Chmiel) Fromm
Videography, Tony Lopez for Films by Design
Flowers, Milwaukee Flower Co.
Invitations, COQUI Paperie
Officiant, Steven Boyle
Bride's Gown, Lee Petra Grebenau
Bridal Salon, Ultimate Bride
Veil, Grace Loves Lace
Jewelry, Jaxie Bridal; Stone Manor Bridal; Mira Zwillinger
Shoes, Badgley Mischka
Hair, Lexi Miaskowski for Lexi Lee Hair
Makeup, Hailey Janzen for Pretty Crazy Beautiful
Skin Maintenance, Champagne Lily Esthetics; Renew Medical Aesthetics
Bridesmaids' Dresses, Hayley Paige
Menswear, Ticknors Men's Clothier
Cuff Links, Brooks Brothers
Engagement ring and Wedding Bands, Rogers and Hollands
Music, Sound By Design
Cake, Mia Stav Cakes
Rentals, Parker Drive Design
Favors and Place Cards, LIT MKE
Wedding Welcome Mirror, Pretty in Ink
Specialty Drinks, JC Cunningham