Sarah and Tom married at her family’s home in New Haven, Vt., as it held many special memories to the couple. With the help of Silver Toad Weddings & Events, Holly Hocks Flowers and Designs and family and friends, the property was outfitted perfectly for an alpine-inspired celebration. / Images by Julia Luckett Photography.
Says the couple, “We chose Sarah’s family’s home because of the meaning the place has to us. We spent many weekends there when we lived in Williamstown and Sarah’s parents came to know Tom and our friends very quickly with all of our Party Barn parties, hiking and biking weekends, paddle tennis tournaments and all the many meals we cooked together in the kitchen. The property is exceptionally beautiful and ever since Sarah’s parents moved there and ever since Sarah knew she wanted to marry Tom, there was never any other option – it was an easy choice.
There were many wonderful emotional parts of the day. It started with the private moment I shared with my mom as we got dressed. She zipped me up and we both put on our matching earrings (custom made by my mom and me from a combination of jewelry from both my grandmothers). My mom and my bridesmaids helped me pin on my veil (worn by three generations before me, including my mom on her wedding day) – it was a delicate process and many hands were necessary!
The visual theme was simple-country-alpine-classy. Since our wedding was at Sarah’s family’s home, we wanted to make sure we incorporated lots of personal touches. Sarah’s dad made the bar by hand using recycled wood from around the property as well as the alpine planters sprinkled around the house. Sarah’s mom created and maintained the exquisite gardens and planted edelweiss and lavender (Sarah’s favorite flowers) around the property. Sarah’s grandfather’s dinghy was used for the beer vessel. The table assignments were all our favorite places and each card shared a personal story about why that place has special meaning to us. Sarah’s grandfather and mom hand painted all the signage around the property. Sarah wore her great grandmother’s veil (also worn by her grandmother and mother). Sarah’s brothers officiated the wedding and shared our story so beautifully. Our dog and Sarah’s family’s dog were the flower dogs. Sarah’s cousin was the adorable flower girl. Our dads wore special ties with personal messages inside. Our moms shared readings as part of the ceremony and we all sang ‘Edelweiss’ in unison as the sun came out. It was also important to us that we worked with local vendors and compiled a great team of fun, hardworking people who love what they do. Our vendor team exceeded our expectations and helped us have an incredible wedding day.”
Sarah and Tom read their vows privately as part of the first look.
“Our wedding was large and we wanted to find ways – throughout the day – to make it feel intimate. This worked so well because it made the words feel stronger and more intimate just two of us. We think, this way, we were able to soak up the words in a deeper way and this intimate moment was one of our best memories from our wedding. To be able to read our own written words aloud – just the two of us – in one of the most beautiful settings in the world was beyond anything we could have imagined. There were some tears mixed with lots of smiles and laughter. During our ceremony, our vows were still emotional and meaningful, but it took the pressure off and allowed us to be more in the moment for this part of our day.
The ceremony itself was one of the most special experiences of our entire lives. Sarah walked down the aisle with my her dad to the instrumental tune of Edelweiss. Sarah’s brothers – Chase and Jake – officiated the wedding and crafted the most beautiful, thoughtful ceremony we could have ever imagined. It was beyond perfect. Tom and Sarah’s moms both shared readings and everyone sang ‘Edelweiss’ in unison. As we shared our vows in front of 230 witnesses, the skies cleared completely and the sun beat down. We sealed it all with the best kiss ever and smiled back down the aisle into our getaway vehicle – a perfectly decorated Kubota full of flowers, burlap and la croix cans clinking behind. We did a lap around the fields and, after the guests went back up to the tent, we drove to our ceremony site to soak it all in. Sharing this moment – just the two of us – was very special. As we looked up the hill at all the people we love most in this world smiling, laughing, drinking and dancing, we couldn’t imagine what it would feel like to be any happier.
The rest of the night was perfect. The dinner, the first dances, the speeches by our maid of honor (Sarah’s best friend & future sister in law), best man (Tom’s brother) and Sarah’s dad were all thoughtful, beautifully-written, funny and completely captured us and our relationship so well. Sarah and her dad opened up the dance floor with an up-beat dance to a special Jimmy Buffett song and we all proceeded to have the best dance party ever. The band was so much fun and completely captured the spirit of our wedding. We experienced the most beautiful sunset and as the band wound down for the night, we made our way to the Party Barn for the after party under a bright, starry night, dancing the night away. It was truly the best day of our lives and we are so grateful to have shared it with all the people we love most in this world.
1. Put all your love and energy into personalizing your wedding day – it’s about you, your love, your commitment and your friends and family gathered together in one special place. Find ways to make it your own.
2. Don’t be afraid to make last-minute changes/decisions on the fly if your venue allows (such as postponing the ceremony by an hour to get married in the field outside)!
3. Do a first look and share your vows privately for the first time. This was a very special part of our day. We shared our vows for a second time during the ceremony, but to have shared them just us first was extra special. Not to mention, it helped with the nerves!
4. Take time during your wedding day to share just you two. It flies by and those moments – even if just sharing a kiss on the dance floor – are so important and meaningful.
5. Have a glass of prosecco or a shot of Whistle Pig pre-ceremony with your wedding party 🙂
6. Hire an EXCELLENT band – this was huge for us and it was SUCH a hit!
7. If possible within your budget, organize welcome drinks and a Sunday brunch so that you can spend more than a couple seconds of conversation with everyone. It takes the pressure off on your wedding day – rather than running around trying to say hi to everyone on your wedding day, we took the time to mingle on the Friday before and Sunday after so that we had more time to celebrate on Saturday.
Photographer: Julia Luckett Photography | Ceremony and reception venue: Private Home | Wedding Planner: Silver Toad Weddings & Events | Florist: Holly Hocks Flowers and Designs | Wedding Gown: Legends by Romona Keveza | Groom’s Attire: Bonobos | Bride’s Veil: Grandmother’s | Bride’s shoes: Kate Spade | Wedding Stationery: August & White | Printing: Little Press Room | Caterer: Almost Home | Hair and make-up: Waterfalls Day Spa | Tent: Celebrations | Videographer: Luke Madden | Rings: The Diamond Reserve