My wedding flowers were a last-minute change

 After years of dating, Sierra and Alex got married by the lake under a beautiful blue sky at Armstrong Farms Westminster Preserve! Their vision of rustic elegance was realized perfectly in the charm of the barn, a spot that's over a hundred years old. Schneider Photography captured their day!

“Alex had been waiting for quite a few seasons trying to find the perfect moment to propose not just a pretty day but something that was special for us. It was two days before Christmas of 2016. We went ice skating, a tradition that we had done together since being friends almost 7 years ago. We went every year around Christmas although I still cannot ice skate to this day. I love going to PPG place to skate and see the beautiful Christmas tree – all the lights, shops, and gingerbread houses. After all these years, Alex is still patient with me and continues to try and teach me to skate. He proposed after a night of ice skating. He seemed very nervous, just mainly smiled, and didn't talk much. That was not like him. Then at the end of the night, he asked someone to take a picture of us because we get one every year and he really wanted one. He went to talk to them and came back to smile for the pictures then out of the corner of my eye he got down on one knee. I was in such shock, I just stared – he had to ask me twice! I of course said yes and it was all tears and laughs. He truly is my best friend.”

“Our vision was to have rustic elegance. We wanted something that felt comfortable but also with some class. We love being outside so it made sense to get married by the lake, which was on the property of our venue. Our venue was Armstrong Farms Westminster Preserve in Saxonburg, PA. We loved it because it had so much character. The barn is over a hundred years old, so decorations did not need to be a lot. The charm of that place really made our vision come true. For the colors, we had the bridesmaids in wisteria, which is a light lavender color. The groomsmen were in light gray suits, and my groom was in a dark gray suit. We also used pinks throughout both the flowers and makeup palettes to pull all of those natural colors through. It was the perfect blend. The style really truly was rustic elegance.”

“My dress was from Deborah's Bridal Traditions in Monaca, PA. I searched countless bridal salons with my mother and nothing seemed right. Then we went into this small shop when I was about to give up. I walked in there and the shop's owner did everything she could to understand my vision for the wedding dresses, and when I couldn't find anything she told me to wait and came back with the exact dress I was describing. It was a strapless lace dress with the most amazing lace detail. It had buttons with a stud every other the whole way down the back of the dress. The train was beautiful and just perfect for our rustic elegant wedding. The bridesmaid dresses were in the wisteria (light lavender) color from David's Bridal. They were long dresses altered to be short for a summer wedding, also strapless, and flowed perfectly. The groomsmen's tuxes were from Men's Wearhouse with the groom Alex wearing a dark gray suit with an ivory shirt and ivory bow tie and pocket square. He also had a pink rose to complement my style. The groomsmen had light gray tuxes from Men's Wearhouse with ivory shirts and light wisteria bow ties and slightly darker wisteria colored pocket squares with a light purple rose.”

“My favorite part of the day was standing there saying our vows and smiling at Alex. I was crying down the aisle and so nervous, then as soon as I held his hand, no nerves – just happiness. Another favorite part of our day was our first dance. Those will be incredible memories and just so much happiness on our day. Having our closest friends and family witness it all, was perfect. I loved taking all the pictures with Alex and our families and the bridal party. Our day was truly perfect because of all the love that was there.”

“My wedding flowers were a last-minute change. We had booked the florist Judas Flowers about 3 weeks before the event. We originally had a different idea for flowers with them but when we booked we changed almost everything. Since pink was being incorporated we had pink and light purple roses with greenery and not in a perfect ball shape as you see in some weddings. It had ivy, queen lace, and hydrangea, as well. The natural part of it went perfectly with the vision for the wedding. The bridesmaids all had slightly different and smaller versions of mine but still beautiful. For our centerpieces, we had a mason jar with hydrangeas that were perfect even the next morning, they had not wilted or browned in color. We had another smaller mason jar with simple baby breath. Then alongside our votive candles, we had one votive with a slightly opened pink rose. Simple, rustic, and elegant. Perfect for us. We also had a huge mason pickle jar with baby's breath for the escort table. The groomsmen had the light purple roses as did our fathers and officiant. The mothers had the white roses pinned to dresses and the groom had the light pink rose.

Our wedding cake was amazing. We had a good friend of ours Katie Moreau that had agreed to make both the wedding cake and cupcakes for our cupcake tower. I really struggled to figure out what would be perfect. Then I decide a naked cake would be perfect for the venue with just a small amount of icing on the outside and little areas of pink flowers covering it. We had a small Mr. And Mrs. cake topper that went perfectly with the whole vision. The cupcakes had lace white lace wrappers around them, alternating between light purple and white perfectly done icing on top. They tasted amazing as well and some were confetti inside!”

“For the favors, Alex and I worked really hard and spent a lot of hours taking care of them leading up to the wedding. We did little succulent plants in mason jars. They came to us needing some TLC and needing to be replanted in mason jars. Definitely, an interesting task to take on, but we loved it. It was a great bonding time for us and we completed the twine and light purple lace wrapped around the top with the help of my parents leading very close to wedding time. We hot glued kraft paper tags onto little sticks that said “Thank you for celebrating with us” and on the other side said “The Clarks 7/29/17”.

We also had personal details with the memorial area, in which we brought our own personal ivory wooden frame with strings and clothespins across it and hung pictures of our family members that had passed. We really wanted to honor them and have those details there and had candles lit for them as well. Other handmade details were the cupcakes and cake that were made by our friend. We wanted a lot of what we did to be made by ourselves or friends and family. The ring bearer's outfit suspenders and bow tie were made by Deb Halle, the same person that made my veil. The suspenders and bow tie were made from scraps from the long sleeve wedding dresses.

The pearls I wore, both necklaces and earrings, are ones that my mother has had for several years. They are very important in our family, and it was important to have that for the wedding. It meant a lot to be able to wear those. We did include the traditional bridal bouquet toss and the toasts of course. We also had a tradition between Alex and I to have that prayer at our ceremony. Bill Halle was our officiant and has been family to us for many years now and has counseled and supported us for as long as we can remember. It was important to us to have that prayer incorporated as we are religious Christian people.”

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