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Real Weddings

A Wedding for Every Style

August 12, 2009 in
Etsy.com handmade and vintage goods

Photo by Rule 42

Emily Newman
oncewed

Emily Newman, like many brides, learned a lot from the process of planning a wedding. She put that knowledge to use and launched Once Wed in 2008. At first, it was a free listing service for wedding dresses online. Emily has since grown the site to be far more today: Once Wed is a resource for connecting with incredible vendors, finding creative ideas — and what really sucked us in — sharing the most amazingly inspiring styles through real wedding photos.

Once Wed is all about handcrafted art and design. So, to share my passion with you guys and feature some of my favorite real weddings is a special honor. Onward!

Ginny & Ed’s Roaring Twenties

Images from board by Josh Goleman

Ed and Ginny were married in ’20s style under a canopy of 100-year-old oak trees, surrounded by close friends and family at a lovely farm called Serenbe. Ginny graduated from SCAD, so naturally many of the elements were handmade by herself and friends. From the adorable bunting banner to her incredible handmade capelet, this wedding definitely sticks out in my mind as one crafted with lots of love.

After seeing Ginny’s incredible capelet, I’ve been obsessed with wearing one! I just adore the idea of going with a simple wedding dress, and splurging on a beautiful bolero. Ginny and Ed incorporated a lot of hand-painted wooden signs at their wedding to direct guests to the ceremony and reception, but if you’re having an indoor reception, what about a beautifully scripted wooden banner to place on your cake or maybe even in a centerpiece instead?

 

The Free Wedding

Images from board by Our Labor of Love

The “Free Wedding” ended up being a collaboration between a group of amazing vendors here in Atlanta, GA. Joy, the event stylist, wanted to make sure their day was a reflection of who Sam, Kaitlyn, and Jonah represented as a family. Every time I see these images from Our Labor of Love, I always seem to walk away with the biggest smile on my face.

The whimsical flower garlands hanging from the ceiling were a huge hit with the couple and wedding guests. People were even trying to take them home after the wedding! So many of the elements from this wedding were handmade, so Etsy was one of the biggest resources Joy used to source materials and decorations. In her search for bridesmaid dresses, she stumbled upon Sohomode’s tea dresses, and it was love at first sight. Her selection of colorful vintage fabrics made everyone’s heart go pitter patter, and really helped set the tone for the rest of the wedding.

 

California Coastal Wedding

Images from board by Tec Petaja

Tec Petaja was the amazing photographer behind Evan and Liz’s hillside wedding. I loved the simple paper goods, white roses, Asian parasols, vintage keys… Really there are so many rich details here. I look at a lot of weddings, and this one strikes me as so original. It’s as I’d imagine a California wedding in the ’40s with a view of the coast.

I really loved the look of their escort cards attached to vintage keys. I thought a rolling alphabet stamp could be a great little budget option for brides who can’t afford to print out escort cards or hire a graphic designer but still want something personal at their wedding. Instead of a traditional wedding program, Liz and Evan decided to hand out programs printed out on paper fans. They are a bit more expensive than a traditional program, but if you’re having your wedding outside in the heat of summer, the added cost of providing relief to your guests might be worth it.

Ethan & Nancy’s Budget Beauty

Images by Kirsten Ellis of Beaux Arts Photographie

Ethan and Nancy’s wedding was probably one of the most popular weddings ever featured on Once Wed — not necessarily because it had the most amazing details or the biggest budget, but because it was done so beautifully for only $3,000. Yes, you heard me right: $3,000. They splurged on their photographer, and instead of having a catered event, asked each guest to bring a dish for a potluck style dinner afterward in a public park.

Nancy and Ethan made hundreds of paper cranes to hang from the trees at their wedding in lieu of expensive decorations.  If you love this idea, but don’t have the time to make them for your own wedding, Etsy sellers will make them for you in a variety in colors. I’m seeing a lot of brides opting for the more affordable option of a variety of smaller cakes rather than a traditional three-tier cake. Nancy and Ethan decided to scatter over their cakes a bit of dried lavender, and it is still to this day one of my favorite garnishes I’ve ever seen. Not only are smaller cakes easier on the budget, but after seeing fancy cakes for so long, it’s also a breath of fresh air.