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Well hello Friday! I hope you are looking forward to the weekend as much as I am! Dexter was poorly last weekend, so I am looking forward to hopefully getting out a bit more this weekend and enjoying some family time together. How has your week been? Have you been doing any wedding planning, or have you been to a wedding? I would love to know your plans.
We are finishing off the week with this lovely Toronto wedding. Deanna and Joshua chose Black Creek Pioneer Village as it gave them the freedom to hold their ceremony and reception in the same place, making life easier for their guests. They filled their day with lots of lovely rose gold accents, as well as some super sparkly sequin table runners, and an abundance of gorgeous flowers. The day has been captured perfectly by Megan Michelle
Deanna and Joshua were married on 9th June 2018 at Black Creek Pioneer Village in Toronto. ‘We wanted something earthy and different, but comfortable for our guests and matching our personalities which are more laid back. Black Creek was the perfect fit – modern and up to date, yet rustic and historical. We also wanted our venue to be wheelchair and mobility accessible. Black Creek has many locations on site for the ceremony and reception, and we chose ones that were all one level (no stairs) Our guests loved wandering around the village, as did we, and it provided a comfortable and homey atmosphere. We had 110 guests and It took a full year of planning and booking vendors. It was a relaxed year though, with the bulk of the work occurring the month before the wedding.’
How they met
We met in high school years before we actually started dating. We weren’t friends and moved on in life. Around age 20, we were both single and attended the party of a mutual friend. We hit it off and started dating about a week later! Totally unplanned and random, but sometimes life hits you when you need it most. We’ve been together for seven and a half years.
Tell me about the proposal
In October of 2015, while we lived in England, we took our first vacation of the year to Sri Lanka where Josh’s parents grew up. It was my first time there and his family spent much of the time showing me around. On one particular day, we travelled to Kandy to climb Dambulla Golden Temple. This UNESCO World Heritage Site is a Buddhist Temple carved into the caves. After climbing, Josh proposed overlooking the Sri Lankan jungle. It was a total shock to me. We had been together for four years at that point, but marriage wasn’t something we were hurried to achieve. I actually thought he was pranking me and asked a few times if he was serious. I answered his “Will you marry me?” with a resounding “Okay!” It was really special that he did it in a place so important to him and his family.
How did you allocate your budget?
We knew we wanted to keep it around $25,000. The reality of it is that we weren’t strict with how we spent that budget. We spent a lot of time researching and understanding costs of different vendors. Our plan was to spend the bulk of our budget on a venue with great food and a photographer. The rest of our costs weren’t strictly divided, but we used friends, family and resources to get cost effective options.
Where did you splurge and where did you save?
Photography was the most important aspect to us from the start and we were set on spending whatever was necessary. We love candid, in the moment photography and sought out a photographer that felt right to us rather than limiting our choices based on budget. We also splurged on seating – we rented two separate sets of wooden chairs for the ceremony & reception. For the ceremony, we chose white wooden chairs to pick up on the white Town Hall. For the reception, we chose a mismatched set of antique chairs that came in different sizes and colours and added a cute, homey feel to the reception.
In terms of saving, we saved on décor by utilizing what was available in dollar stores, our homes, and places like Homesense. We used wooden planks that we had around the house, bought our seating plan window frame from an antique shop in Orono, used picture frames from our house and purchased in dollar stores, and old family photos for décor.
How did you choose your photographer?
The first photographer we inquired for our day was actually booked, and provided a list of available photographers. We found Megan in this list and knew right away that she was the one. She has a gorgeous talent of balancing fine details and in-the-moment emotions which was important to us. Life has a way of working itself out sometimes and we can’t imagine our day without Megan there.
My dress was made by a Canadian bridal company called Mikaella. It was comfortable and lightweight and I loved it! The shoes were by Badgley Mischka. The rest of my accessories were family heirlooms.
The suit and bridesmaids
Josh had his suit custom made by Indochino. It was a gorgeous blue and he was able to customize every part of it which he loved. He even had his late uncle’s name embroidered into the inside pocket.
Our bridesmaids wore dresses by The Dessy Group. All of them chose a style they felt comfortable wearing.
Theme or colour scheme
We are both simple people, so a colour scheme wasn’t a priority. Early on in the planning, I found this “love” balloon in rose gold and that is what became the main focal colour. All other colours were chosen to highlight the undertones of the rose gold and the rustic quality of the village itself. We had lots of earthy browns and taupes as well as peach for a brighter take on that undertone. This was shown best with our wedding party. My maids of honour wore rose gold, and the others wore taupe, and the boys wore peach ties.
Because we chose a simple colour scheme, we wanted the flowers to be bright and stand out. Our florist, Kirsten, designed romantic pieces using a palette of gorgeous oranges, corals, pinks, whites and blushes, and bright lavenders to stand out and brighten up the wedding. Our focal flower was the peony which gave our arrangements a really lush, family garden feel. I wanted the dinner tables to be as simple as possible to allow people to speak across the table, so she designed simple arrangements in mason jars.
For the rest of the wedding, we wanted statement pieces because everything was so simple. The flowers were the “wow” of the wedding. Kirsten created two huge statement pieces to frame the ceremony and a giant garland for our head table.
Our main decoration was actually picture frames! We didn’t have any huge hanging pieces or anything bulky or major except for the flowers, but on the tables leading into the reception as well as each dinner table, we had rose gold, silver, and wooden frames with family pictures.
Our venue had a lot of options for us so we had quite a large menu. Our guests ate hors d’oeurves during cocktail hour that included mini beef yorkies, vegan crostini, small arrancini and curried chicken tortilla bites. For our mid-courses, we enjoyed a light orange and spinach salad and pasta with a light pesto sauce. Our guests had a choice of three mains, including beef shortrib, honey trout, and ratatouille polenta. The gorgeous meal included a rich triple caramel crunch cake dessert individual for each guest. Needless to say, our guests were full and happy by the end of the night!
The wedding cake we had was kindly made for us by a friend, who created a tidy wedding cake. It was simple, with buttercream frosting, vanilla poundcake, and fresh fruit on the outside.
We chose a DJ to provide a variety of music and he was fantastic. We cut out all of the random traditions like cake cutting, the garter and bouquet tosses, in favour of letting people dance the night away. We felt those traditions didn’t speak to us as a couple, and instead we preferred to design the floor plan of our venue to allow people to mingle and enjoy the night rather than watch us perform.
Who supplied the stationery?
Black Creek supplied all tableware and stationery.
We made a real effort to change any traditions or “norms” that didn’t match our personalities and our vibe as a couple. All of the personal touches made the day comfortable and a little unconventional.
Our table number “theme” was us as children. For each table number, there were pictures of Josh and I at that age. For example, table one had pictures of Josh and I at age one.
We had a “memory table” at the front of our reception area with pictures of family members who had passed away and couldn’t be with us.
Our favour was a donation to the Canadian Cancer Society to honour our lost loved ones.
In addition to our cake, all of our desserts were made by our grandparents, mothers and aunts. They were all family cookies and cakes that everybody at the wedding has had many, many times.
Our late night snack was a fire pit with s’mores. Josh and I love camping and we love the outdoors, so this was a nice personal touch provided by Black Creek.
To start the dancing, we played Macedonian music and had the best time Macedonian dancing. I’m Macedonian, so it’s a family tradition to dance hand in hand at weddings.
Special moments or highlights
The most special moment was when his grandfather, Dudley, arrived to the venue. Dudley has Alzheimer’s disease and since 2015 has been in a nursing home. He arrived at the venue and caught us at a rare time alone. He immediately remembered Josh, thanked Josh for inviting him to the wedding, and asked if he could walk Josh down the aisle. It was so special that he was present-minded and able to remember who Josh was for the day.
Another special moment was our first look, which we did to cut the pressure of walking down the aisle. It was the best, most relaxing moment. We were both so jittery and nervous and seeing each other beforehand was a great way to calm down and really appreciate each other’s outfits. It was also a good reminder of how good we are for each other.
Advice for other couples
Make sure your wedding reflects who you are as a couple. Just because something is a tradition, doesn’t mean you need to include it in your day. Pick details, designs, venues, and events through the night to match who you are. These personal details will make your day unique and memorable – nobody else in the world is like you and your wedding should reflect that.
What was your biggest surprise of the day?
We love our families, but the level of comfort they shared on our wedding day was something that surprised us both. The day was warm and happy, and our guests spent much of the night meeting each other for the first time, mingling with old friends, reconnecting or dancing the night away hand in hand. People who hadn’t even met before spent the night dancing and hugging. It was the best way to start a marriage, and a great reminder of how much we are loved and supported.
Venue: Black Creek Pioneer Village
Photography: Megan Ewing
DJ: DJ D-Money
Flowers: Roots & Wildflowers
Dress: Mikaella Bridal
Bridesmaids Dresses: The Dessy Group
Bridal Party Make-Up: Maquillage by Priya
Bridal Party Hair: Jodi Davis (Noble Studio 101)
Chairs/Barrels: Marvelle Events
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