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Rachael + Phil

(September 17, 2022 in Nordman, ID)

Planning a wedding can be both exciting and overwhelming. It's a day that is meant to be special and memorable, and every bride has her own vision of what that looks like. In this blog post, we'll hear from a bride who wanted her wedding to be rustic and simple, matching the stunning scenery of Priest Lake. She shares her experience of planning and executing her dream wedding, along with her #1 tip for future brides. If you're in the midst of planning your own wedding, or simply looking for inspiration, read on to learn about one bride's beautiful vision for her special day.

By our real bride, Rachael:

What was the vision for your wedding?

I wanted my wedding to be rustic and match the beautiful scenery of Priest Lake. I knew I wanted a lot of greenery in my decorations, and my main color was Burgundy. I also knew I wanted to keep things simple, so while I used a Pinterest board to get some ideas, I did not use it throughout the process. I did not know exactly what I wanted, and I was lucky enough to have amazing Aunts that did the majority of the decorating on my wedding day. I've grown up going to Priest Lake my whole life, so when it came to choosing a venue it was a no-brainer. In terms of choosing vendors, I started with picking a photographer and went from there. I used Instagram the most, but I also used The Knot to explore vendors. Once I booked my photographer I asked her for recommendations and she gave me some great ones! I found my makeup artist this way.

How did it go the day-of?

My wedding day was magical! We were so worried about smoke or rain, and when I woke up that morning it was clear blue skies and a beautiful sunrise. I knew it was going to be a beautiful day. Something that made our wedding unique was the majority of our guests stayed in the cabins at Elkins that weekend! We had a Welcome Bonfire on Friday night and it felt like summer camp! On our wedding day, I saw all of our guests walking around the resort, relaxing on the beach, and a few were brave enough to swim! I loved this because I was able to spend more time with everyone than a typical wedding entails. My bridesmaids and I enjoyed getting ready together all morning, and my first looks with my Dad and Phil were emotional and beautiful. Phil and I had so much fun walking the grounds with our photographer, and we even got to watch a seaplane take off during our photos on the beach. The ceremony was so special and our French Bulldog Bob was the ring bearer and the star of the show. The rest of the day was a blast. My husband and I knew we wanted to enjoy our cocktail hour with our guests, so we cut photos short and hung out on the lawn with everyone! I highly recommend doing this instead of missing the whole cocktail hour. We then had a great dinner and the rest of the night was dancing and fun! We played the shoe game which I also recommend! The whole day was so much fun, I wish I could do it again!

What is your #1 tip for future brides?

Take the time on your wedding day to have some downtime with both your spouse, family, and guests! My photographer made sure to schedule times to have this, which was crucial! I knew I wanted to take in every moment of the day, so I was intentional about spending time with the people I love! In order to have this time and enjoy the day, I advise keeping things simple! Don't worry about every single detail, quality time is more important! I loved getting to join the cocktail hour, so this means taking the majority of photos before the ceremony. And if possible, have an event the day before so that you can catch up with more of your guests. This will take the pressure off of you on your wedding day to have a conversation with every person!