Want a country-style wedding with rusticity and charm by the bucketful? Envisioning a glorious ride for two around the hayfield? See yourself gliding down the aisle in a fresh-as-summer cotton eyelet gown? Then you’ve found the right place to help you pull off that special event you’ve always dreamed of!
Back to the Land
Start with a palette of earthy tones: yellows and golds, tans and umbers, sage and russet, celadon and cinnamon.
Then, try building the theme around your favorite rustic flower (like sunflowers, black-eyed susans or daisies). Or borrow a carefree member of the insect world, such as bees, butterflies or dragonflies.
For a venue, try a cornfield or a wheatfield, barn or cabin. Tents can travel to all kinds of charming spots. Call around for camps and lodges that lightly booked and eager for business.
Fancy up wedding arches, rafters and other focal spots with branches, bundles of corn stalks and sheaves of wheat. If you’re lucky enough to be holding your event in a barn or a lodge, wrap any rafters and pillars in elegant twinkle lights.
For more country touches, draw on ears of dried corn, grapevine wreaths, hanging lanterns, and gourds and pumpkins (carve out your monogram, then give them some glow with a votive or a battery-powered light).
To jazz up personal focal points like favors and place settings, start with raffia ties and cinnamon sticks, individual wheat stalks or lavender springs, or Mason jars, burlap bags and small pots of jam or honey.
It’s simple to set the table with a little down-home glory. Candles are inherently rustic, so start with tea lights floating in water-filled mason jars. Or tuck pillar candles into terra cotta pots, or place in glass cylinders filled with popcorn, dried peas or coffee beans.
Farmers’ Market Flowers
Casual flowers make a big, joyous statement at a reasonable price. Try massing cheerful sunflowers in galvanized pails or watering cans. (You can even use a sunflower’s enormous, friendly face as your ring pillow.) Or try sprays of shasta daisies, lupine and viburnum mixed in with small green apples wired to birch branches, or stuck to dowels. Or group colorful Gerber daisies into simple mason jars.
Twig to This Clever Idea
Speaking of birch branches, elegant bare-branch centerpieces can be set in any pot and anchored with Quik-Crete for sturdiness. They look especially lovely when lit with hanging votives. Then, warm up those dark corners and window sills with evocative punched tin lanterns.
More Rustic Touches
Give your guest an adorable first impression by hanging escort cards from wooden clothespins on a clothesline strung near the entrance. When it’s time to eat, dress up the chair backs at the sweetheart table with dramatic sheaves of wheat tied off with russet ribbons or roses. And if your main meal’s held outside, you could set the stage with homey touches like buffet or serving tables made from planks set on hay bales and sawhorses. As for the guests, set up picnic-style seating with checkered, gingham or eyelet linens.
Galvanized washtubs look gorgeous filled with ice and drinks in vintage-style bottles (think: Stewart’s Sodas — and ask your local suppliers about their best-tasting microbrews.) Don’t forget the oversized jars filled with fresh iced tea and cold apple cider.
Treat your guests to home-cooked soul food like pot roast and pulled pork, fritters and cornbread, apple cider donuts and fruit pies. As for cake, try any of the Autumn-style flavors on for size (spice or carrot, apple or pumpkin …). Decorate with your favorite fresh flowers, making sure they’re unsprayed and organic.