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A Family Affair

Those are the words we experienced 2 weeks ago when our long time baby sitter and stand in older sister for our daughter Kelsey got married. Emily came to us around 15 years ago when I was teaching and expecting our 4th child. She was a perfect fit to the family and being a teenager, she was full of energy and love for our soon to be active family of 6. She stayed with us through baby #5 and then off and on again through college and the launching of her own career as a nurse. She is filled with as much love and compassion that one soul can hold and I have yet to meet someone else like her….until we met her new husband Matt. A match made in heaven as the saying goes could not be more apropos! Although she has a fabulous and wonderful family of her own, we consider her family and it made our hearts happy to see her walk down the aisle 2 weeks ago to enter into her new life.
Emily asked  if I could help her “Patina” her wedding a few weeks prior to the actual celebratory day. I was honored and told her I would do whatever she needed. Styling a party, wedding or any special occasion for that matter is my absolute favorite thing to do! Turned out that Emily really did not not need me for she had a vision in mind that was absolutely beautiful, simple and expressed exactly who she is. I just helped to fill in the blanks and I wanted to share with you images of this beautiful day, if not one of the hottest days on record!
The wedding was held at Appleford in Villanova. An old estate which dates back to the 1700’s. There was a peaceful lilly pond on site as well as gorgeous old stone patios and gardens. What a setting!
When I titled this Blog entry, A Family Affair, I did not write that lightly. Emily’s entire family, from her sister and brother to her mom and dad, grandmother, grandfather and family friends lent a hand to make this day for Emily and Matt as well as all of their guests, an unforgettable one.
They constructed these adorable yet elegant Mr. and Mrs. bean bag toss games as well as the bean bags themselves that were placed perfectly next to the lilly pond.
This precious wooden H which stands for Emily’s shared name with the man of her dreams was carved by her grandfather and hung behind their wedding table. (Never mind that it took us close to 5 tries to hang it correctly!)
The place cards were succulents that Emily’s uncle grew. They potted them in terra cotta pots and added a chalkboard sign with the guests names done in fanciful handwriting.
Emily borrowed an assortment of chalkboards from Life’s Patina and had her friend hand wrote sayings and verses on them to put in strategic places. ( I need her friends contact info!)
Love this saying…
and the sign that her friend penned describing the drink of the day!
We used easels to display most of the chalkboards and hung an assortment of green moss balls, glass jars hung with wire to hold candles in and baby’s breath covered spheres as an arrangement that spanned the bar area. (That was a family affair getting that all hung!)
Don’t you just LOVE this sign that the guests were greeted by as they entered the gardens? Once again, the handiwork of Emily’s grandfather!
We hung an old picture frame in a tree where Emily had props and other chalkboards for guests to write messages on while a photographer snapped away, recording the messages to the bride and groom in photo.
The colors were soft pinks and greens with a brighter pop of pink here and there…just lovely! The flowers were assembled by the female members of Em’s family.  Her dad even picked a couple of buckets from our pink hydrangea bushes to fill in the bare spots!
The table arrangements were the same shades of pink and green combined with more succulents to tie in the place card seating pots that were composed of the succulents.
Emily’s brother picked up the twenty something lanterns that they borrowed from Life’s Patina and we used them in the center of each of the tables in assorted sizes and styles. They were placed on top of a burlap runner sewn by Emily’s grandmother.
The cake was elegant in it’s simplicity and oh so good!!
A more beautiful toast from sister to bride has never passed my ears and the love that surrounded Matt and Emily on this day will travel with them as they journey into their new lives as man and wife with blessings a plenty.
Love and miss you Matt and Emily!

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