Shelby + Michael. Desktop Image

Shelby + Michael

(October 12, 2019 in Spirit Lake, ID)

In this blog post, we hear from a bride who wanted a classic Pacific Northwest wedding, complete with overcast weather and natural beauty. She shares how her family came together to help create the perfect day, and how taking a few moments to step back and appreciate the celebration with her new spouse made all the difference. If you're planning your own wedding, read on for inspiration and advice on how to make your special day unforgettable.

Shelby looked breathtaking in our Adara gown by Willowby. This is a gorgeous tulle A-line gown with a mixture of small and large floral appliques throughout the skirt and bodice. Delicate ruching covers the unlined bodice which comes into a deep v-neckline and the back of the gown comes into the same v-shape. Dainty buttons add a vintage flair to this whimsical, boho wedding gown. Shelby had custom sleeves built with matching appliques and we LOVE the way they turned out.

By our real bride, Shelby:

What was the vision for your wedding? 

I grew up going to the lake house almost every weekend all year long. I have always loved the romantic, woodsy feeling that the northwest forest has in the fall. Michael and I wanted a classic NW wedding, complete with overcast weather and bundled-up guests. We wanted to make sure to highlight the natural beauty of the lake, so we tried to prioritize nature and to minimize decorations. My parents and my sister were all married at the lake in the summer, so we knew it would make for a great location for the celebration, however we wanted to put our own spin on the party by having a fall wedding.

How did it go the day-of? 

The day of the wedding was hands down the best of my life. I got up early after staying out there at the cabin for the night (Michael had stayed out with the rest of our guests at Stoneridge Resort in Blanchard, ID). My dad and I headed out just after sunrise to visit my grandpa's grave, followed by a nice cup of coffee together at a local coffee shop. Once we were back, my sister Taylor and I started on decorating the reception tables. My family was amazing, the week building up to the wedding everyone took time off work to set up the whole location and get everything ready. While Taylor and I were decorating, my mom, dad, and brother-in-law were putting final touches around the entire venue.

I was lucky enough to have my cousin's partner Mallory (who is an amazing hairdresser in Nashville) offer to do my hair and she made getting ready such a blast. My bridesmaids showed up a couple of hours before the wedding to get ready, and we all had such a great time. I spent about an hour doing my makeup (over and over again) before I finally liked the way it looked. My mom got ready with me, which put me at ease in the time building up to the ceremony. By the time the ceremony rolled around, all of my day-of jitters were gone and I couldn't wait to get out there and see Michael.

Michael and I wrote our own vows, and had not heard each other's prior to the big day. I will never forget how it felt to stand up there and hear those beautiful things in front of our friends and family, many tears were shed. Our officiant was the amazing Bill Harper, the reverend that Michael had known well growing up on Bainbridge Island, who put us and the crowd in a state of total peace and relaxation throughout the ceremony. It was the most beautiful half hour of the most beautiful day. After the ceremony, our wedding could only be described as a party! Our priority was that everyone had their share of food, drinks, and LOTS of dancing.

The story of our wedding could not be told without a giant shout out to my mom, Lorrie Smyly. She planned everything down to the smallest detail, and went so far beyond our expectations to make sure that Michael and I had a perfect day. The whole thing could not have happened without her amazing efforts and eye for details.

What is your #1 tip to future brides? 

The one thing that I would recommend to future brides is taking a couple of minutes to remove yourself from the party and watch it from afar. Michael and I separated ourselves a couple of different times from the party and left the tent to look in from the outside - those moments looking at all of our loved ones together are so clear in my memory. It's so nice to stand outside of it all and take a few deep breaths and really appreciate the moment with your new spouse.

Dress: Adara by Willowby

Veil: Lauren by Sara Gabriel designs

Alterations: Heidi Samuelson (Heidi's Fashion Design)

Hair: Mallory Granrath

Photographer: Krysta Rownd Photography

DJ: Soundwave Entertainment

Day-of Wedding Coordination: Satin-n-Sage Events

Cake: Sweet Frostings, Nothing Bundt Cakes

Food: Meltz Extreme Grilled Cheese

Rentals: Event Rents

Flowers: Flower and Stem (Beverly Odland)