DIY Weddings/Real Weddings

Laid-Back Barn Wedding (With Horses!)

Laid-Back Barn Wedding (With Horses!)

Bridechillas take note, today’s real bride is a queen of the whole “relaxed bride” shtick. Planning their wedding in three months, embracing the inclement weather, and DIYing most everything, Amy and Jonathan put on the sweetest, laid-back farm wedding – horses and all!

While looking back, Amy may have chosen otherwise in the whole “three months to plan” scheme, she took to Pinterest and put together a cohesive wedding scheme of boho style, vintage details and bundles of eucalyptus – we bet the leaves smelled so wonderful in the rain!

Amy found the perfect barn venue within the first month of being engaged, and if that’s not amazing enough – her romantic Casablanca gown in week one! Planning the whole wedding herself, with the help of wedding industry pros in the family and on the guest list, Amy filled the barn with mix and match china, lush greenery, warm lighting, rustic details and the sweetest, berry garnished naked cake. We are so impressed!

Laid-Back Barn Wedding (With Horses!)
Laid-Back Barn Wedding (With Horses!)

Our Love Story

Jonny & I met about 13 years ago because I was really good friend with his older sister (whose name is also Amy!) who I met at a local church event in Sarasota. My family lived in Ohio, and every winter around Christmas and New Years my family would vacation to Sarasota, FL where Jonny’s family lived.

Our mutual interest in playing volleyball kept us connected for years, playing together, hanging out in groups of friends, but never anything romantic. Until we won a big outdoor volleyball tournament together in 2012, and then the sparks started flying.

I knew he was the one. It took him a little bit longer. We broke up a little while later and had our own little adventures and growing time in life (and spiritually), and started dating again in 2015.

Laid-Back Barn Wedding (With Horses!)
Laid-Back Barn Wedding (With Horses!)
Laid-Back Barn Wedding (With Horses!)

The Proposal

We went out on a date on a Friday night, planning on going to eat at Cheesecake Factory. He was so nonchalant about everything, and I was just excited to be on a date, that I had no clue what was in store later that night.

We stopped at Cheesecake Factory, the wait time was forty minutes. Jonny said that was too long, lets try somewhere else. So we tried two other restaurants, the wait was too long he said. I was a little disappointed because I had gotten dressed up for Cheesecake Factory, but told myself it’s the thought that counts. Little did I know, he was just trying to kill time.

On the way back to my house, he said that his mom had made a new cheesecake recipe if I wanted to go and try it. “Sure!” Then he said new lights were put up around the boardwalk close to his parents’ house. “Sure!” That sounds romantic (duh!) It was odd that we were going there first because we could have just seen the boardwalk on the way to my house from his parents’ house, but I was like, “Okay!” (#clueless).

We pulled up to the boardwalk and it was lit up with a whole bunch of candles in mason jars, and a little table at the end with roses and chocolate covered strawberries that his friends (elves!) were busy preparing. I figured it out when I saw the candle.

Jonny handed me a note to read while we walked to the gazebo at the end where the table and flowers were. It was a note that he had made while we were broken up titled “What is Love?” I teared up walking down the gazebo reading his note knowing that this man wanted to love me in the absolute most Godly way possible.

We made it to the end, of course, I forget anything that he said at this point before he got down on one knee, proposed, I said “YES!” He then called his friends who were hiding and we all headed to his parents’ house where had had an engagement party all set up (and yes, there was cheesecake!)

Laid-Back Barn Wedding (With Horses!)

Getting Ready

My bride tribe and I arrived at the venue Sunday morning around 9 am to get our hair and makeup done. It was such a fun, relaxing time being together and just hanging out before it all ‘started.’ There was a chance of rain in the forecast, which made me a little nervous because we were planning on having an outdoor ceremony!

After getting our hair and makeup done, we walked down the stairs and I walked into the most amazing reception space that I’ve ever seen. My friends absolutely blew me away with how they put everything together and it was more than I had ever dreamed.

Laid-Back Barn Wedding (With Horses!)
Laid-Back Barn Wedding (With Horses!)
Laid-Back Barn Wedding (With Horses!)

The First Look

Jonny & I had our first look on a hill behind the farm. It was such a relief to finally see him, and be in his arms. I started crying tears of joy because I was so thankful that it was ‘him.’ We managed to get in all of the bridal pictures, and then the rain came (along with a little bit of chaos).

We quickly headed back down to the barn and finished up with family pictures while friends and family quickly moved the sound system, decorations, and some chairs into a tiny ceremony space in the barn. We crowded all of the guests in, most were standing, but it ended up being a blessing in disguise because it made for such a relaxed atmosphere!

Laid-Back Barn Wedding (With Horses!)
Laid-Back Barn Wedding (With Horses!)

The Photography & Videography

Jessica is my husband’s first cousin. Serious blessing to have her in the family! How lucky are we! Films by Trait are some of my very close friends who are very talented and are just starting up a filming business.

Laid-Back Barn Wedding (With Horses!)
Laid-Back Barn Wedding (With Horses!)

The Venue

Most people involved in my wedding were friends and family. Such a blessing! The main reason why I chose them.

The reason why I chose Rivercrest Farm was that I wanted my wedding day to be relaxed. I didn’t want my friends and family having to work and be stressed the day of my wedding, and Rivercrest Farm provided that. They set up the tables just the way that I wanted them, put the linens on, set the plates and silverware, and made sure the whole day ran smoothly just the way that I wanted.

Not only that, but the venue is absolutely gorgeous and Deanna (the owner) makes you feel like you’re the most important bride of them all. I love vintage, romantic and boho styles and Rivercrest had all of that – including my dream of mismatched vintage plates for every guest! Plus, there was going to be line dancing at my wedding, so of course, it had to be in a barn.

Laid-Back Barn Wedding (With Horses!)

Favorite Moments

Feet washing (bride & groom) during the ceremony, which is a symbol of serving each other until death do us part. We also did the shoe game! I always thought it was so entertaining and fun finding out little details about each couple.

The bridal party line dance was so special. We are thankful for a bridal party who aren’t all necessarily line dancers and from three different states to learn a line dance just to make our wedding so much fun and special!

Also, the two glass candelabras on the bridal table were used at my grandma’s wedding too!

Laid-Back Barn Wedding (With Horses!)
Laid-Back Barn Wedding (With Horses!)
Laid-Back Barn Wedding (With Horses!)
Laid-Back Barn Wedding (With Horses!)

“We had a three-month engagement and I planned this Ohio wedding from Florida. Anything is possible! I flew home to Ohio two days after we got engaged and picked out my dress (found shoes in thirty minutes so they could start altering my dress) and visited numerous venues in one week. Not recommended, but encouraging all that you can do it!”

Laid-Back Barn Wedding (With Horses!)

The Details

Choosing my wedding color was actually little challenging. I wanted something romantic and elegant, and thanks to Pinterest, I became mad about mauve. My theme was vintage, elegant, and romantic with a little bit of boho inspiration – Pinterest helped me so much!

I love seeing pictures of bridal parties in matching robes, and was so happy that I was able to do that for my own wedding!

I love music and wanted my wedding songs to be different than other weddings that I had attended! So, for the bridal processional we played “Story of My Life” The Piano Guys, for the Recessional “You’re The One That I Want” by Olivia Newton John & John Travolta, for the first dance “Perfect” by Ed Sheeran and finally for the bridal party line dance we played “Footloose”!

Laid-Back Barn Wedding (With Horses!)
Laid-Back Barn Wedding (With Horses!)
Laid-Back Barn Wedding (With Horses!)

Advice For Other Couples

Maybe have an engagement longer than three months! But in all honesty, it is so much fun when you are surrounded by the best family and friends and are so supportive of making your dreams come true.

Take the extra mile and time to make the little things happen on your wedding, it’s always worth it! Pick your battles, he has some wedding dreams too! And then when the wedding happens, it is what it is and don’t worry about anybody else except you and your husband and just enjoy your days and laugh the night away with your family friends!

Oh and use Pinterest! I also used the Wedding Wire app for my budget tool and seating chart and loved it. You can lay out your floor plan with the exact table and number of chairs to make it so effortless!

Laid-Back Barn Wedding (With Horses!)

The Honeymoon

We went to the Platinum Yucatan Princess all-inclusive, adults only resort in Playa-del-Carmen, Mexico. We highly recommend it, it was so relaxing after such a busy week and day!

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