Chris and Kate first met as next-door neighbours when they were just six years old, but their relationship didn't develop into something more until the end of their time at university. "We always had an interest in each other and both had a feeling we would end up together," Kate reminisces.
After going steady for almost a decade, Chris popped the question on Christmas morning, using a juicer as a decoy gift to throw Kate off. "Feeling very confused (and a tad disappointed!), I put the juicer on the floor and when I turned around, Chris was down on his knee holding a ring. It was perfect," she says.
As childhood friends growing up in the country, the pair would walk to school together and play in the wide open fields around their houses, so it only made sense that they would choose a relaxed, country-inspired theme for their wedding. "We really wanted to stick to our roots and make the day feel as real, natural and intimate as possible," Kate explains. A loose colour scheme of white and pastel green created a simple look while rustic, woodsy details kept the decor relaxed and easy.
Along with the country, lush summer gardens were a big inspiration for the duo. Florals filled every nook and cranny of the venue, adding an element of natural elegance. "Fern and Kayleigh of Fern & Sprout Flowers absolutely nailed the flowers for our wedding. They even picked flowers from their own wildflower gardens to pull it all together!" Kate says.
Along with the vendors, Chris and Kate's family members took part in the planning and decoration process, making every detail deeply personal. One of Kate's best friends designed her wedding gown, while a family friend made the cake and the bride's mother created all of the signage. "It was truly a group effort, DIY kind of wedding!"
As for the venue, Chris and Kate (a former competitive horseback rider) knew a rustic, equestrian-themed setting was a must for their big day. "We wanted to step outside of the box from a typical wedding venue, and when we found this place we knew it was the place for us. Getting married out in the field with the horses and the jumps in the background was such a perfect setting," she says.
Not only was the wedding location chic and rustic, but the couple made sure to arrive in style, renting a vintage VW bus as transportation. "It was so much fun jumping in such a cool, old vehicle and driving over to the venue with our maid of honour and best man by our sides. People were honking at us on the road and giving us the 'thumbs up' as they drove by. It was a perfect start to a perfect day!" Kate remembers.
Another highlight for Chris and Kate was their intimate ceremony, officiated by Mark Groleau of Young, Hip & Married. "We met with Mark two or three times and he put together a completely original ceremony based on the elements that we wanted included and left out elements we did not. As was the goal for the entire day, we wanted the ceremony to be an intimate, personal and authentic experience and he truly helped make that vision become a reality."
The couple and their guests ended the day with dinner and dancing, including the first dance to "Greatest Sum" by the Avett Brothers. "After being together for nine years before we got married, we’d been through a lot together, so the words from this song really spoke to us on a personal level. As soon as we first heard it many years ago, we both knew it would be the song we danced to at our wedding."
Kate Shepherd and Chris Glassow, July 4, 2015, King Township, Ontario.
Ceremony and reception location: WaterStone Estate & Farms
Bridal gown: Kathryn Boake (email@example.com) Groom's suit: Banana Republic
Cake: Terri Adams (firstname.lastname@example.org) Caterer: Joshua Hendin from Treeline Catering
Favours: Donations to CAMH and the Alzheimer's Society of Canada
Wedding planner: Andrea Scott-Pearse (email@example.com) Music: Jason Stanton from Muskoka Touring Company
Hair and makeup: Leigh and Mandy from Salon Decorum
Flowers: Fern and Kayleigh from Fern & Sprout Flowers (firstname.lastname@example.org) Stationery: Kathy Cartan from Motive Media
Officiant: Mark Groleau from Young, Hip & Married
VW bus rental: Greg Stogren (email@example.com)
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