Cultural Weddings/Real Weddings

Rainy & Romantic Barn Wedding With Vietnamese Influence

Rainy Casual Barn Wedding with Vietnamese Influence – Emma Anne Photography – The Mulberry – Bridal Musings 59

We love when wedding “Plan Bs” turn out to be just as wonderful (or even more so) than “Plan As”! That’s what happened for this rainy & romantic barn wedding at The Mulberry in Florida.

As a Pacific Northwesterner, whenever my childhood friends start planning their weddings I always plead with them to plan for rain. Even in the depths of summer, the weather can always take a stormy turn for the worst. If my gal pals are into the style, I always offer a barn venue as a smart suggestion. Usually boasting plenty of outdoor space for perfect sunny weather, barn wedding venues almost always have a beautiful cozy indoor space if you need to pivot to Plan B in a storm – no tent needed!

And same goes for Florida brides & grooms as well! Often greeted with afternoon rainstorms, Quyen & Cole knew that a rainy wedding day could be in the cards. When the wedding morning arrived with dark storm clouds, their planner prepped The Mulberry’s barn for a cozy & romantic indoor ceremony. Of the last-minute switch, bride Quyen says, “We ended up having our Plan B ceremony, but it was only fitting for me and Cole as many of our dates early on took a turn due to unforeseen weather.”

The day as oh-so-romantic & we loved the special touches honoring Quyen’s Vietnamese heritage!

Rainy Casual Barn Wedding with Vietnamese Influence – Emma Anne Photography – The Mulberry – Bridal Musings 55
Rainy Casual Barn Wedding with Vietnamese Influence – Emma Anne Photography – The Mulberry – Bridal Musings 24

Our Love Story

Cole and I met in 2012, during our freshman year of college at the University of Central Florida.

One night while I was sitting in my dorm room, I heard loud noises coming from the room next door. It sounded as if someone was repeatedly banging on the wall with a ball or something. After several minutes passing and the noise continuing on, my roommates and I decided to go to the dorm next door and ask them to quiet down. This is where I met the boy next door, Cole. As fate would have it, Cole’s bedroom wall was shared with mine.

Several weeks passed and Cole and I would run into each other more and more. After many between-class encounters in the hallways, Cole finally asked if my roommates and I would want to go to a football game with his roommates – and our friendship finally began. After many football games, movie nights, late-night trips to Steak ‘n Shake, and months of being friends, Cole finally asked me to be his girlfriend in the spring of 2013.

Rainy Casual Barn Wedding with Vietnamese Influence – Emma Anne Photography – The Mulberry – Bridal Musings 42
Rainy Casual Barn Wedding with Vietnamese Influence – Emma Anne Photography – The Mulberry – Bridal Musings 13
Rainy Casual Barn Wedding with Vietnamese Influence – Emma Anne Photography – The Mulberry – Bridal Musings 15

The Proposal

Cole and I had been dating for 6 years before he popped the question. We had been in a long-distance relationship for a couple of years after we graduated from UCF. I moved to Fort Lauderdale for grad school and he moved to Bradenton for a job opportunity. It wasn’t until fall of 2018 where we were finally able to end long-distance and Cole got a promotion and moved to Fort Lauderdale with me.

For my birthday, Cole surprised me with a weekend trip to Disney. Disney Springs has always been a special place for us, a hot spot for our date nights in our early years of dating. We had spent the day drinking around the world at Epcot. That evening, Cole told me he had made dinner reservations at one of the new restaurants in Disney Springs.

On our way to dinner, he passes by the parking garage where we would normally park. I questioned Cole’s sense of direction but passed it off quickly as this wasn’t anything out of the norm for him to do. We finally found a parking spot at the other end of Disney Springs, and Cole got very quiet while we started walking away from the car. I became suspicious and started jokingly patting his pockets, but Cole was prepared and grabbed my hands before I could do it.

He started leading me over towards the lake and I spotted a photographer hiding behind a tree in the corner of my eye. I immediately burst into tears, I knew this was the moment. We both blacked out during the actual proposal, but all I can remember is that he got down on one knee, and I was unable to find any words so I just nodded my head “yes.”

Rainy Casual Barn Wedding with Vietnamese Influence – Emma Anne Photography – The Mulberry – Bridal Musings 17
Rainy Casual Barn Wedding with Vietnamese Influence – Emma Anne Photography – The Mulberry – Bridal Musings 19

The Venue

We always envisioned our wedding to be simple and filled with lots of greenery with white florals and twinkle lights. We chose our venue for many reasons. We loved that it offered everything we needed all in one location. A beautiful outdoor ceremony would take place below an oak tree followed by the reception in the barn. The barn had large beautiful barn doors, a large open space big enough to fit all of our loved ones comfortably, and an indoor and outdoor bar with a wood counter that was made from a fallen tree on their property. It didn’t feel like a typical rustic barn wedding. The venue was so perfectly designed for a modern and elegant atmosphere.

Rainy Casual Barn Wedding with Vietnamese Influence – Emma Anne Photography – The Mulberry – Bridal Musings 20
Rainy Casual Barn Wedding with Vietnamese Influence – Emma Anne Photography – The Mulberry – Bridal Musings 21

The Dress & Attire

Choosing our color scheme for our bridal party was probably one of the harder decisions to make. I knew I was going to keep my décor very simple with mostly greenery and white florals, so I didn’t want my color scheme to drive the whole wedding style.

From the get-go, Cole wanted him and the guys to wear navy suits. I was completely okay with this because blue always makes his eyes pop! For my girls, I knew I wanted something in a neutral color so it wouldn’t clash too much with the navy. After many fabric swatches, I decided to go with dark mauve. It wasn’t too bright of a color and I knew it would look great on all of my girls.

For my wedding dress, I had an idea of the silhouette that I wanted but didn’t have my mind set on anything else. I was also planning on using a veil my mom had made for my sister when she got married, so the only other criteria for the dress was that it had to go with the veil. I tried on 6 dresses total, and the last dress I tried on was the perfect one. It was a design by Emmy Mae Bridal that featured a low back and was form-fitting with a long train.

Rainy Casual Barn Wedding with Vietnamese Influence – Emma Anne Photography – The Mulberry – Bridal Musings 25
Rainy Casual Barn Wedding with Vietnamese Influence – Emma Anne Photography – The Mulberry – Bridal Musings 28
Rainy Casual Barn Wedding with Vietnamese Influence – Emma Anne Photography – The Mulberry – Bridal Musings 3

The Photography

We found our photographer, Emma, through Instagram. I had seen her work pop up a few times from other weddings around the area. After chatting with her, I knew she would be the perfect photographer for us. Her style is airy and romantic and she is able to capture those timeless wedding photos. She is also the ultimate hype girl, being just as excited for the wedding like we were. It was a bonus that her sister happened to be married at our venue a couple of years before us!

Rainy Casual Barn Wedding with Vietnamese Influence – Emma Anne Photography – The Mulberry – Bridal Musings 31
Rainy Casual Barn Wedding with Vietnamese Influence – Emma Anne Photography – The Mulberry – Bridal Musings 35

Special Details

It happened to be raining on our wedding day. The morning threatened dark clouds and gloomy skies, but we were still holding out hope that it would pass come ceremony time, because Florida weather is always so unpredictable. Plan A was to have our ceremony outdoors under the beautiful oak tree. Leading up to the wedding, Melanie, our coordinator discussed what Plan B would look like in case we had bad weather. Melanie maintained good communication with us throughout the day as she was overseeing the set up, and had us prepared for the possibility that she would have to make the call to move it inside. We ended up having our Plan B ceremony, but it was only fitting for me and Cole as many of our dates early on took a turn due to unforeseen weather.

Another special thing we included in our wedding was adding a cultural touch! I am Vietnamese and it was important for me to showcase and share my culture with our families. We had an outfit change during our reception where we wore traditional Vietnamese wedding attire. It was a hit and my grandparents especially loved to see us in the outfits.

Rainy Casual Barn Wedding with Vietnamese Influence – Emma Anne Photography – The Mulberry – Bridal Musings 38
Rainy Casual Barn Wedding with Vietnamese Influence – Emma Anne Photography – The Mulberry – Bridal Musings 40
Rainy Casual Barn Wedding with Vietnamese Influence – Emma Anne Photography – The Mulberry – Bridal Musings 46

The Decor

As for the décor we decided to DIY most of it. I used Pinterest as a guide for what I wanted my reception space to look like. The best part about our venue, was that you could have no decorations at all and the space would still be beautiful.

All of the signage was handwritten and painted by me. The floral hoop that we used for the ceremony and then flipped for the reception space behind the sweetheart table was actually built by my parents! I was inspired by some photos on Pinterest, and my parents were able to bring it to life. It was everything I could have imagined and more and it was even more special that it was made by my parents.

Neon signs have also been super trendy. Cole and I really loved the look of them and found a company that allowed us to completely customize how we wanted it to look. It was worth the splurge and all of the guests loved it!

For the centerpieces on the table, I really wanted to keep it simple with mostly greenery. I worked with my florists because we had a pretty strict budget for the florals. She actually suggested that it would be more cost-effective to buy bunches of loose greenery, rather than a garland, and lay it across the long banquet-style tables we had. We decided on three different types of greens – fern, eucalyptus, and ruscus. And to tie it all together with the string lights and beautiful chandelier already in the venue, we filled the tables with tea candles and fairy lights.

Rainy Casual Barn Wedding with Vietnamese Influence – Emma Anne Photography – The Mulberry – Bridal Musings 9
Rainy Casual Barn Wedding with Vietnamese Influence – Emma Anne Photography – The Mulberry – Bridal Musings 11

The Planning

Melanie Paige, our wedding coordinator was part of the package we had purchased with our venue. Melanie was much more than a day-of coordinator. She reached out to us as soon as we booked the venue and had several check-ins with us leading up to our wedding date, making sure we had everything we needed and stayed on track with all those important timelines!

Our DJ was recommended by Melanie, and we were so happy to work with DJ Dave! He was very detail-oriented, and let us customize everything.

Rainy Casual Barn Wedding with Vietnamese Influence – Emma Anne Photography – The Mulberry – Bridal Musings 58
Rainy Casual Barn Wedding with Vietnamese Influence – Emma Anne Photography – The Mulberry – Bridal Musings 27
Rainy Casual Barn Wedding with Vietnamese Influence – Emma Anne Photography – The Mulberry – Bridal Musings 47

The Catering

We chose 4Rivers to cater for us because it was one of our favorite spots to eat at while we were in college. Plus who doesn’t love delicious barbeque food for a wedding! 4Rivers was so great and easy to work with. They had so many food options and could customize it however you wanted to. We also were able to add on a sundae bar for our guests!

Rainy Casual Barn Wedding with Vietnamese Influence – Emma Anne Photography – The Mulberry – Bridal Musings 5
Rainy Casual Barn Wedding with Vietnamese Influence – Emma Anne Photography – The Mulberry – Bridal Musings 48

Advice to Other Couples

The Knot app & website was my most used tool! It helped me keep track of my planning timeline, vendors I needed to book and was what I used for guests to access our wedding website and RSVP. We also bought a wedding planner budget guide book that helped us figure out our budget and our priority vendors and items we were willing to splurge on.

My biggest advice with planning a wedding is to make sure you have a vision of what you want your wedding to look like! There are so many unique ideas out there, so it can sometimes be difficult making decisions. But if you already have an idea in mind, it makes the process much easier.

On the day of the wedding, my biggest advice would be to enjoy every minute of the day because it will be over so quickly! Don’t worry about all of the things that may not go right because, in the end, the wedding is about celebrating love and union.

Rainy Casual Barn Wedding with Vietnamese Influence – Emma Anne Photography – The Mulberry – Bridal Musings 49
Rainy Casual Barn Wedding with Vietnamese Influence – Emma Anne Photography – The Mulberry – Bridal Musings 53
Rainy Casual Barn Wedding with Vietnamese Influence – Emma Anne Photography – The Mulberry – Bridal Musings 54

The Honeymoon

Our wedding took place during the time where there were still Covid restrictions with traveling so we did not take a honeymoon. We are in the process of planning our “later-moon” currently! I would say that if you have the time and opportunity to take the honeymoon after the wedding, I would definitely do so. Newlywed bliss is the best feeling and there is no better way to celebrate being married than a vacation as Mr and Mrs.

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