What creative or personal aspects did you include in your wedding?
We tried to make our wedding a reflection of ourselves as best as we could. We love where we live so we wanted to put a focus on our favorite local things.
Our caterer is a farm to table caterer that only serves 15 couples a year because they “aren’t a wedding factory” and focus on making it personal, which I loved.
We aren’t big fans of cake but love dessert, so we did a dessert table consisting of treats from three of our favorite small businesses.
For favors, we gave out our favorite locally-roasted coffee.
We named our three signature cocktails after our cats – so you could order The Freyja, The Syn, or The Beyla. We didn’t serve local wine, but we did serve local beer and cider.
Instead of hiring a DJ to play party hits, one of my bridesmaids and I sat down and spent (who knows how many) hours putting together the perfect playlist – handpicking every song, the placement of each song, and timing it with our event timeline.
Everything was done incredibly thoughtfully and meticulously. We did not want this to feel like the average wedding.
Did you do any DIY projects or create any handmade items for your weddings?
Yes! I made all of the signage myself. I also designed the invitation suite, menus, and programs, and also built our custom wedding website (zakihaskell.com).
We also purchased a bar secondhand, refinished it, and tiled the countertop of it for our bar setup.
What was the biggest thing you did to save money?
I designed and planned the entire thing myself rather than hiring a planner or even a day-of coordinator (but, Sweet Berry Farm had a day-of onsite coordinator and I am SO thankful for that).
We also opted to use a beverage consulting/bartending service so that we could supply our own alcohol and have a full open bar for significantly less than what it would have costed us to do something like a 3-hour open wine and beer bar through a caterer.
What’s the best advice you have for planning your wedding now that you’re on the other side?
Start early, pause and reflect often, and remember to breathe. Go with the flow, because something’s bound to go wrong. But that doesn’t matter! You’re surrounded by everyone you love and everyone’s there to have a great time and celebrate that special love of yours. That’s all that matters.
What was your biggest splurge?
Our biggest splurge was the food. I feel like wedding food is known to be bad, so we made having a great meal one of our top priorities. It was so worth it!
What was your favorite detail?
Oh, gosh. The aura photo experience, for sure. It was so wonderful to see everyone’s auras displayed – so much color! And most of our guests had never had their aura photos taken, so they were really intrigued and excited by this personalized experience.
What is the most memorable moment of your day?
I hate to be repetitive, but for me, it was when my husband and I got our aura photo taken together. We got them taken separately at first – everyone has their own aura, but you can take portraits to capture your aura as a couple, too. Auras also change over time depending on your life circumstances. So, it was a really magical thing to see the auras from our individual portraits unify – and Glenna from Bright Future had such a wonderful reaction when she began to interpret it. She couldn’t stop saying how “beautiful” it was, and it’s just so cool to have captured that energy we shared together – so vibrant and full of so much love – on the evening of our wedding. I’ll cherish that forever.