Ryan and I wanted the wedding to feel like us – not too formal but not casual, personal, full of lots of love and FUN. We met in 2005 and tied the knot in June 2014! With only a few venues in our hometown, we wanted something different and something that was unique to us. I always envisioned a classic outdoor ceremony and a glamourous reception with lots and lots of lights, bright colors, with a romantic vintage look. Having an outdoor ceremony was very important to me as I am obsessed with photography in natural light. With just one walk down the split level terrace on the back of the Fenimore Art Museum in Cooperstown, New York, I was head over heels and knew this was the aisle I would be walking down to my future husband. The Fenimore Art Museum combined with The Farmer’s Museum was the perfect pair to create a unique and one of a kind setting for our special day.
Inherently artistic from my mother, combined with a strong background in design and weddings, attention to detail has always been my most favorite thing. The best way for us to ensure that the details captured who we are as a couple and reflect who we are as individuals, was to do it ourselves without a planner so we could be as hands-on involved as possible and create our own ideas. I think that planning and coming up with ideas for your day is by far the happiest time of your life. I got to plan with my soon-to-be husband and enjoy the excitement of crafting our own vision into a reality! It was fun and amazing to combine things that we both love.
The Fenimore Art Museum was the perfect spot for our ceremony and cocktail party and provided the classic outdoor atmosphere with the most beautiful backdrop of Otsego Lake. The Art Musuem was impeccable on its own with its timeless background, split level aisle, and gorgeous gardens with gazebos. I wanted to use very minimal decor to keep its natural beauty by only adding single stem peonies in small ivory and gold tea glasses to each of the cocktail tables.
Ryan’s friend Justin Thornton, who is Lead Pastor at Jericho Road Church in Muskegon, Michigan was grateful enough to make the long trek to Upstate New York to lead the ceremony. We chose him because Ryan and Justin grew up together, played soccer together for as long as they can remember, and offered a ceremony that was really about the two of us – not some Justice of Peace or priest that we didn’t know. He also provided humor and a calming sense for us on a day that we were both very excited and nervous for. The best part was his personal “object of affection” that he does at wedding ceremonies he conducts. The gifts are exchanged between the couple getting married and it needs to be something special for the two of them. Ryan gave Danielle a diamond necklace that has been a part of the family for generations. Danielle gave Ryan a beautiful watch so that he can always cherish the time not only on the wedding day, but the time he will spend with her for the rest of their lives. The ceremony was filled with lots of laughs and tears, and it wouldn’t have been that way without Justin.
Having live music during the ceremony, cocktail hour and reception were very important to us. We both wanted to keep the more traditional songs for the presentation of the bride as well as the recessional but add a personal twist to seating of the mothers and bridal party procession which were sung live including “Forever Young” by Audrae Mae and “A Life That’s Good” by Lennon and Maisy Stella with amazing words. For our reception, it was important that we had a live band and had music that everyone could relate to. We wanted a wedding band that would rock out the barn, and our guests would remember. There’s nothing like a live wedding band to get a crowd stoked for a great party ahead! Our pick, Prime Time Horns seriously threw us the best party, leaving very few guests in their seats throughout the night.
The reception was located in the Main Barn, the Louis C. Jones Center of the Farmers Museum and was quite a gem! It was a massive stone barn, dating back to 1813. It was beyond beautiful and the entrance to the barn was incredible. Proximity of the ceremony and cocktail hour to the reception was a big deal to us. We wanted both the ceremony and reception close to each other without time gaps so that our guests could get around our venue easily and did not have to spare an extra hour or two in between the ceremony and reception. The moment we walked into our reception for the first time alone, from the twinkling lighting, to the smallest of decorations, everything was to die for. It was everything we had imaged but a million times more!
Our color palette was cream, ivory, champagne, peaches, gold with bright accents. I wanted the lights, centerpieces, and sweetheart table to be the main color focus of the barn by having vibrant florals pop against the neutral, champagne looks of the linens and tables. I wanted all of florals used throughout our wedding to be unstructured and different to go along with the unique setting including the centerpieces, bouquets, vintage knack finds I collected such as a gold polka dot teapot, milk vase, variety of old photo frames, and gold glitter tea lights. The rustic wooden flower boxes were hand built by a good friend of ours and two of them being built specifically for the wedding party tables filled with mason jars inside and then the bridesmaids bouquets placed to create those centerpieces.
My bouquet was crafted with white peonies, peach and pink garden roses, chamomile and dusty miller. The girls carried a hand-tied gathering of garden roses, stock, chamomile, brightly-hued pink peonies, statice, and astilbe accented with huckleberry, with a pop of orange. The centerpieces for the guest tables were filled with soft, gardeny arrangement of white monte casino, pink limonium, with punches of bright peaches and yellows. The astilbe and baby’s breath used in the arrangements as well as the 6 foot tall handmade fabric garlands added texture and softness to the arrangements and inside the barn.
In choosing my wedding gown, I knew I wanted something different, unique, lace and a statement look. I fell in love with my wedding gown from the most welcoming, lovely bridal shop in Potomac, Maryland called Love Couture Bridal. What I loved specifically about this dress was the fan pattern of chantilly lace. I had never seen anything like it at the time and the cafe color with the ivory lace overlay suited my skin tone very well and the silhouette showed off my curves. I paired the dress with a silk organaza rosette sash and wore the flower off to the slide to top off the look and give a little glitz to the lace. Sometimes people feel that a belt is too much with their dress or over the top, but to me if you choose the right one you can pull it off – and to me it made my dress even better! And I chose to offset the belt to the side so that it was on the opposite side of my hair fascinator.
I always envisioned myself wearing a birdcage on my wedding day as I was never big on veils. However, I did not want to limit my options and decided to try on a few traditional veils. They were not for me and I felt that they covered my very detailed dress. I found a vintage inspired designer online and found the perfect double layer birdcage veil and paired it with a feather fascinator. After the ceremony, I removed the veil and kept the feather fascinator in. To keep the classic and vintage look I wore a beautiful classic pearl necklace from the front but a dramatic drop in the back. The pearl strands had antique components paired with crystal rhinestones. I would like to say that my necklace was subtle in the front and a party in the back!
Makeup by: Erin Marzilli
For the bridesmaids, I wanted to be sure that I styled the bridesmaids as well as styling their bouquets. The bridesmaid dresses are from TopShop and Lily Boutique. The dresses were a total of three styles. The maid of honor wore a lighter peach embellished shoulder dress with embellishments that would match my rose gold jewelry as well as their rose gold stud earrings. The bridesmaids wore organza peach floral dress in a brighter peach and three cousins wore a lace floral dress in mint. I wanted the girls to match the vintage feel of the wedding and these dresses nailed it! We had so many compliments on the combination of the dresses. I loved the peaches and mint paired with bright luscious blooms from Flowers by Suzanne. I chose these dresses online instead of a wedding boutique as well as cowboy boots in any color brown to be budget friendly to my friends. It was also very important to me that the girls were comfortable, which is why I wanted the dresses in a fit and flare style refraining from being formed to your body and shoes that you can dance the night away in – but in style and a little Yee-Haw! The girls were so flattering and their bouquets were styled to perfection – unstructured, lots of texture, lots of pops of color and one of a kind. The girls had a summery makeup look that was old glamour style with a burst of color on their cheeks and lips. I also joined the girls in cowboy boots immediately after the ceremony. (Despite of my struggles trying to get those fitted boots on, luckily one of my bridesmaids gave up her socks so that I could slip them on easier with socks!) These boots were not bought for just the wedding, but my very first pair of real cowboy boots that Ryan bought me for Christmas one year after traveling to Texas for work. These boots were touched up and polished for the personal touch on our big day.
Ryan, my dad, his dad, and all of his groomsman wore grey Vera Wang slim fit tuxedos. While they were a bit more expensive than usual, it made a huge difference as all of the guys looked amazing!
I am the owner of Deesigns by Dee, a custom stationery business specializing in weddings and I really enjoyed designing, assembling our save-the-dates, invitations, welcome cards, programs, escort cards and Instagram cards for our rustic glamour wedding. It was so much fun and I was really happy to see the final outcome!
It was really important to us to incorporate decor with sentimental value. For instance, my mother in law’s lace from her wedding gown was used to wrap my bouquet, my mother’s hand-embroidered handkerchief with my parents’ names and wedding date were sewed on top of the lace wrapped bouquet, gold and champagne old ornate picture frames were used to display both our parents wedding photos as well as my grandparents wedding photo, song lyrics written on wooden arrow signs pointing to one another were used for the back of our sweetheart table chairs which was our favorite song that reminded each other of one another since 2005, and a Father Daughter dance with a song that played on the radio when my parents and Ryan dropped me off to college. We also wanted personal, meaningful details that captured who we are as a couple and where we came from. My mother bought us a big New York State cutout shape for our guests to sign instead of a boring old guestbook.
We wanted a video booth to reflect our goofy and fun side. Ryan was in charge of props for the video booth and I strategized with our videographer, Zach Cullen of Cullen Studio. Ryan had bought endless props with no guidelines or limitations. Not only did we display props like a photo booth when it was really a video booth where guests would be caught off guard, but we had another little trick up our sleeve which was to play our entrance song “Best Day of Our Lives remix” at the end and make our guests dance on camera. We had no doubt in our mind our family and friends would be so into this and it was a huge hit!
My biggest inspiration was my grandparents who are the sweetest, kindest, most inspiring, and my most favorite couple ever. An 88 year old suitcase purchased in mid-1926 by my great grandfather was used to hold our cards and gifts. My grandpa and his family used this suitcase on numerous treks across the Atlantic Ocean, leaving Germany for America and vice versa. On an adventure at their house, I had climbed their attic and found this treasure and even though the wooden suitcase was quite large – I was set on using it for our big day and make my own card display with meaning. With the help from my mom, we freshened up the suitcase and completely lined the suitcase in a floral pattern. Not only did we surprise them with the suitcase, but the anniversary dance too. One of the most moving parts of the celebration is the anniversary dance and I knew they would be the last ones on the dance floor being that they have been married the longest. Prior to the wedding, I asked my grandparents what their favorite slow song was and when they were the last couple out there, our wedding band made an announcement and played their favorite ‘Time after Time’ in their honor.
We had so much fun at our wedding and were so caught up in the joy of being with each other, family, and friends. This day could not have been any more amazing. Thanks to my parents for throwing the best wedding and making “our day” exactly how we wanted. A special thanks to both families for being so supportive and loving – we are lucky to have you. We are so grateful for the most talented people we got to work with – our ridiculously talented, yet sweetest photographer Tiffany Wayne, our amazing videographer Cullen Studios, because of you, we now have our wedding day captured perfectly and will forever remember the best day of our life.
– Danielle Tronovitch
We are so happy to have Danielle as a featured bride in our May issue of Homemade Bride Magazine and hope you join us for the launch on May 24th to see more of Danielle and Ryan’s gorgeous wedding!