It Was Impossible to Determine Where the Gardens Ended and the Event Florals Began at This Wedding in Michigan
Stevie and Scott met over three years ago—and when Scott proposed, he did so in a botanical garden on April 26, 2019. It was only fitting, then, that their wedding would take place in an equally lush locale. And their venue of choice had a personal twist. "Stevie's family owns a stunning property near Ann Arbor, Michigan, with orchards, vineyards, and a beautiful private lake," says event planner and designer Cassy of Cassy Rose Events. "From a design perspective, the options for utilizing the space were bountiful."
Their original plan, even pre-COVID-19, was small; they dreamed of an intimate, family-only ceremony with a larger group invited for cocktails, dinner, and dancing. And while they needed to course correct in terms of the latter—and a slew of modifications were necessary given the pandemic—their close-knit celebration was always meant to be. In fact, "spending so much time with the people that mean the most to us" was the main highlight, says the bride.
Changing guidelines were the only stressful part of the process, notes Stevie, but she and Scott were determined to marry. "We had our minds set that we were going to get married no matter the obstacles," she says. "Thank goodness for our wedding planner, Cassy—without her, we would have been lost!" With Cassy's help, she and Scott curated a bold, vibrant event that was full of florals; the garden theme was translated via the table linens and paper details and through an abundance of real-life blooms that covered virtually every inch of the separate event spaces. "All of the décor, the flowers—it was a complete dream!" says Stevie.
Married at Home
For Stevie and Scott, getting and married at home, on a sprawling family estate, was always their first choice. The property's colorful gardens set the tone for the equally-vibrant pink-and-red color palette.
A simple suite by Leah Moss Designs was dressed up by a myriad of thematic and personal touches. Dainty blooms danced across a details card, while bigger, bolder iterations defined the envelope liner. An embossed double-S was placed at the top of the main card as a nod to the pair's shared first initial.
The Dashing Couple
Overlaid with lace and studded with pearls, Stevie's Tony Ward wedding dress gave her chills when she first stepped into it. "I had tried on about 15 gowns prior," she shares. A cross necklace, blue diamond tennis bracelet, custom earrings from Stephanie Gottlieb, and shoes from Jimmy Choo rounded out her ensemble. Scott donned a bespoke navy suit from Alexander's Custom Clothiers.
Puppy Cuff Links
A deep, dotted purple tie (which was an homage to the bridesmaids' attire), brown Salvatore Ferragamo shoes, and personalized cuff links completed the groom's look.
Thinking of You, Dad
The bride gave a handkerchief, embroidered with this sweet message, to her father on the big day.
Bridesmaids in Plum
Stevie's attendants wore plum-hued Show Me Your Mumu dresses in a mix of necklines.
Pinters Flowerland assembled the bride's vibrant bouquet, which highlighted every shade of the event's color scheme and was composed of garden and spray roses, ranunculus, anemones, and dahlias.
Into the Garden
A beautiful patio overlooking the lake, accessed through the garden, served as the duo's ceremony spot. "Typically, this garden is home to mostly fruits and vegetables," notes planner and designer Cassy of Cassy Rose Events. "When we first toured the property (a year-plus out from the wedding), we met with the family's gardener to discuss transforming it and the surrounding landscaping into lush floral beds."
Since the space is a functioning garden, Cassy and her team embraced the existing surroundings, adding blooms in corresponding colors that intensified the flower-forward vibe. A broken arch framed the potting shed that marked the top of the aisle.
Pink and Red
"At the ceremony itself, we tucked guests into a colorful floral oasis, lining the rows and surrounding stone ledge with lush blooms," notes Cassy.
The rosebud-covered ceremony programs were filled with personal notes to their loved ones. "Stevie and Scott took something that is typically a simple piece and elevated it to keepsake status," says Cassy.
Scott and Stevie's ring bearer and flower girl, dressed adorably in Etsy ensembles, made the processional memorable.
Tying the Knot
Stevie's brother served as the officiant during the religious lakeside service, which was accompanied by live music, courtesy of White Pines Entertainment, a string quartet.
Homage to Pups
The signature drink of the night? An espresso martini dubbed "The Rex"—a nod to the couple's very energetic pup.
Floral Dinner Party
The small group found a big and bold dinner setup on a patio, where floral linens were topped with bright lush, compote centerpieces. "Juxtaposed against the neutral sophistication of the boat house patio itself, this vibrant tablescape provided the perfect amount of pop to elevate the festive nature of the dinner," says Cassy.
Carnations, roses, zinnias, and greenery studded the petite arrangements; maroon candles, housed in glass hurricanes, were the ultimate complement.
Roses Mark the Spot
Simple settings, framed by crystal goblets and gray-handled flatware, grounded the tablescapes. Attendees found a monogrammed menu, topped with a wax seal crest, at their spot.
On the Menu
Forte Belanger provided a delicious late-summer menu. The first course was a duo plate of chilled sweet corn soup with beet and watermelon salad; it was followed by Angus filets paired with locally sourced asparagus and greens.
The couple's cake went through a number of revisions due to ongoing COVID-19 limitations, notes Cassy. "Ultimately, a small cutting cake served during family dinner was the perfect compromise," she says. "Heather of Sweet Heather Anne created a gorgeous buttercream confection with an oil-painting technique to bring out the vibrant color palette of the event with a fresh, abstract aesthetic."
A Tent for Dancing
To account for COVID-19, Stevie and Scott opted for a "strolling cocktail reception" after the main meal; a spacious, open-air tent allowed for plenty of social distancing.
Framed with Florals
Red-and-white potted florals and grounded arrangements marked the mouth of the tent.
A Place to Rest
Inside, smaller cocktail tables, topped with the same linens seen during dinner, offered guests ample room to rest.
A custom dance floor and suspended floral chandelier were the design highlights of the tent. The couple took their first dance to "Yours" by Russell Dickinson.
To end the evening, the newlyweds surprised their loved ones with a choreographed fireworks show over the lake. The couple had worked closely with Ace Pyro to craft an epic display and that extra care had the desired effect: The light show brought tears to guests' eyes.
Photography, Blaine Siesser
Videography, Blue Racer Productions
Event Production and Design, Cassy Rose Events
Flowers, Pinters Flowerland
Stationery and Calligraphy, Leah Moss Designs
Officiant, Max Jones
Catering and Bar, Forte Belanger
Cake, Sweet Heather Anne
Music, White Pines Entertainment (ceremony); DJ C4 (cocktail hour and reception)
Bride's Gown, Tony Ward
Bride's Shoes, Jimmy Choo
Beauty, The Makeup Loft
Bridesmaids' Dresses, Show Me Your Mumu
Groom's Attire, Alexander's Custom Clothiers
Groom's Shoes, Salvatore Ferragamo
Rentals, Event Theory (main production); Visionary Sound Productions (dance floor wrap); La Tavola (linens); Event Source (chairs)
Lighting, Elysium Experience
Fireworks, Ace Pyro
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