Real Wedding | Audrey & Mike

What I admire most about this wedding is the fact that the bride and groom knew just want they wanted. They created a wedding based on the traditions they liked, and ditched the ones they didn’t.  The result was a meaningful, personal wedding that was as individual as they are. How perfect.

Audrey & Mike | April 30, 2010 | Winter Park, Florida

How he proposed
Mike showed up at my office one afternoon, got down on one knee and proposed. We had talked about marriage quite a bit, so I was sure I would see it coming, but this was a total surprise. I suspected something was up when I saw him wearing a suit and tie as he is usually a khaki and polo guy at work, but I couldn’t be sure. Needless to say (after a moment of speechlessness) I said “yes!”

The ceremony
We were married in a small wedding chapel in our hometown of Winter Park. Because the chapel held just 24 people, we invited only our closest friends and family. The ceremony itself was short and sweet; he recited lyrics from Bob Dylan’s “Wedding Song” while I read a quote from Tom Robbins. We wrote our own vows and a close friend played all of our ceremony music on acoustic guitar.

The reception

Our reception took place at the Winter Park Farmers’ Market (the old Train Depot) one block down from the wedding chapel. The Farmers’ Market is one of our favorite Saturday morning destinations and was literally the first thing we booked when we got engaged. The building has so much history and charm and we didn’t want to detract from that at all, so we opted to keep it simple. We didn’t choose a color scheme or a theme; just started collecting stuff we like – mostly vintage and handmade goods. Luckily, everything came together beautifully.

One of the highlights of the evening was the photo booth guest book; it was busy the entire night and so much fun to look at the day after. 😉

The moment Audrey will never forget
There was a moment during our wedding reception where my husband took me aside to just sit and talk. For as much time as I had spent with him that day, we never really had the opportunity to be alone together. It was a welcome break from all the chaos and a handsome gesture on his part. The dancing was also quite a show.

Savings and DIY
Most everything we used for our wedding was either vintage or handmade. Etsy, eBay, thrift stores, antique stores and wedding forums were all great resources. We also looked for vendors who were new to the wedding business and did a lot of negotiating. We found that most were willing to work with us if we asked.

What made her wedding dress “The One”
I knew from the beginning that finding a dress would be difficult for me. I am not exactly what you would consider a “traditional” bride and I also didn’t have a lot of money to spend. I shopped vintage, department stores, bridal salons, eBay and Etsy – all to no avail. I was finally inspired by a Monique Lhuillier-esque dress of a fellow bride and thus decided to go the custom route. It turned out to be a great decision in the end.

Her advice for other brides
I think the really important thing is to remember what the day is all about. You are marrying your best friend, your lover, your partner in crime; it is really a chance for the two of you to celebrate a bond that already exists. For our wedding, Mike and I kept the traditions we wanted, got rid of those we didn’t, and created some of our own. I think that stepping outside the box a little makes it more fun for everyone and gives your guests the opportunity to get to know the two of you a little better.

Audrey’s Wedding Dress: Custom Made (Inspired by Monique Lhuillier Melissa)
Photography: Ben Sasso