On November 24, 2012 Chris & I were married in a simple, sweet ceremony with our close family in attendance. It was very us and very lovely.
We had a seven-year courtship and a three-month engagement. We've known for awhile that we wanted a smaller wedding and a shorter engagement, so when Chris popped the question we decided it would be nice to marry by year-end. So we did! We set the date for the Saturday after Thanksgiving, because what nicer holiday to couple up with than one that is all about gratitude and family and good food?
There are a thousand different, beautiful ways to get married. I was just reading about a wonderful church wedding with 200 guests that came after a four-year engagement! So while we chose one path because it felt the most true for us, we understand that it is just one of many paths a couple could take.
One of the blessings of a short engagement, however, is that there isn't time to obsess about the details. If it couldn't get done in a few months, then it wasn't getting done. So we were able to toss aside a lot of things that didn't matter to us and focus in on only the things we really wanted. Decisions were generally made rather quickly and without too much fuss, when possible. Sometimes it felt like a time crunch but most times it felt wonderfully freeing.
We decided that we were going to look sharp as hell on our wedding day. I ordered my sparkly dress from BHLDN and found my wedding cardigan, coat, pumps and incredible feathery fascinator during trips to the mall with my mom and sister. Those ladies were invaluable as I hunted for my wedding outfit and great reassurances when I asked if I would still look like a bride if I wore a short dress with a cardigan. Chris' mom did the minor alterations on my dress during a weekend visit up north. I wore strands of family pearls and my favorite pearl drop earrings. I studied YouTube makeup tutorials regularly and practiced my cat-eye eyeliner application with intense commitment. (If anyone ever wants to talk about wedding dresses, ordering one online, skipping the traditional gown and doing your own makeup... let me know. I've got lots to say on these topics.)
Chris bought himself an incredible suit when we were in NYC for the wine and food festival and matched it with a great vest and a new shirt, tie and red socks. He looked so handsome and dashing that I could hardly take my eyes off him. I think we looked like really awesome versions of ourselves, which is just how we hoped to look. Not like other people, not like a fairytale, but like us.
Our shorter engagement was supported by most everyone, though met with a few raised eyebrows from time to time. We knew it was a timeframe that worked for us and got us to our end goal: getting married. It was a really busy time to plan a wedding in, with hectic work schedules and the holidays, but it allowed us to have a bit of perspective about wedding planning and to strip the process down to the basics of what we really wanted. Given the time, I would have drowned myself in DIY details until my stress level burst through the roof. We knew we wanted to avoid that, and we did. We chose a few things to DIY (invitations, flowers, decorations), a few things to buy or pay someone else to worry about (outfits, photographer, lunch) and ignored everything else.
I'll share a few more photos of our wedding next week!
(Photos by Heidi Benjamin)
Update: Read about our ceremony here and our lunch celebration here.