In the last year, I've grown to know Mattie and Travis and have loved sharing in, and capturing, a few very exciting seasons of life. The two have taken all of life's turns and blessings in stride, and have done so with a grace and class that have left me in awe.
When considering all the ways I could share their special day on my tiny corner of the vast interwebs, I knew I couldn't possibly do so without Mattie's point of view. You see, she planned a gorgeous rustic Oklahoma wedding in an impossibly short timeline, that had this photographer swooning over very practical, and highly Pinterest-worthy details. Here's the story, and the photos – heart eyes, y'all, heart eyes.
Travis and I originally planned to get married in October of this year. Sometime in April we received sobering news that my dad’s battle with cancer had taken yet another unexpected turn. We knew we had to rethink our plans. After looking through the calendar, the only feasible date was Monday, May 28: Memorial Day. “It’s only a little over 5 weeks from now,” I remember saying to my fîancé, who responded with silence. I knew it was a longshot. I was panicked just thinking about it. But we started looking into it anyway.
Is our preferred venue available? Yep.
Is our photographer free that day? Check.
Can the required people be there? Yes!
And just like that, May 28 was our new date.
As it turns out, it was the best decision we could have made – for so many reasons. A short timeline and limited budget forced us to focus only on the things that mattered most. Yes, a more traditional wedding can indeed be pulled together in under two months. And we did it within budget!
I immediately booked our venue and photographer. Then I started looking through the list, delegating according to our friends’ and family’s strengths. I have a friend who is great with making decorations and knows the food scene in our area better than anyone. Another friend is very experienced with hosting/organizing events, as well as designing spaces. By tapping into the talent and generosity of our friends, we were able to quickly take care of everything from a mini bachelorette night before the wedding to the officiant, to the music, and everything in between.
Venue (ceremony + reception)
This venue is a little-known gem in Oklahoma. For anyone planning a smaller event, it offers a breathtaking view overlooking Skiatook Lake and it’s free to use for anyone who is a first responder or a veteran. They only ask that you make enough of a donation to cover the cost of utilities while you use it. It’s not a large venue, but with a little strategic thinking we were able to use it for both the ceremony and reception.
Stacy Pearce Creative
She’s fabulous, gifted, and such a professional. She makes the photography experience fun.
(Photographer side-note: I didn't pay her for this comment ... but the feels. I have them. Also, I had an excellent second-shooter in Alicia Castaneda. Even with a broken arm, my wingman came in clutch.)
Designed + printed by bride (MattieLynn Media)
They did everything. Our nearest location has a floral designer on staff. I gave her the specs and showed her a few pictures for inspiration. She ran with it from there. The boutonnieres, bridal bouquet, arch flowers and cake flowers were all designed by her. We also got extra loose stems for additional decoration. And it was all for less than $600.
Food & Drink
Main Course: Speedy Gonzalez Mexican Grill & Cantina
We were able to get great Mexican food on a holiday thanks to having a connection to the owner of Speedy’s. We had steak and chicken street tacos, roasted whole jalapeños, rice, beans, chips and salsa – all for $7 per person.
Side dishes, bottled water for tables: Whole Foods
Whole Foods caters, but you can also order large quantities of their side dishes. Check them out. We got their roasted corn salad and guacamole to complement the tacos. They were delicious!
Wedding cake, Groom’s cake: Linet Navarro
Sometimes local businesses are the best option. Linet is from my hometown of Chandler, OK. She is so talented and creative. She worked with me through text message on what we wanted, and absolutely nailed it. She did a fabulous job with both cakes and drove almost 100 miles to set everything up. Cost of the two cakes, travel and setup was less than $200. I told her she isn’t charging enough.
Ceremony: Jonnah Liddell
Jonnah is a friend of ours who sings professionally, and would have been invited to our wedding regardless. But Travis and I decided it would be so much more meaningful to us for her to sing during our ceremony rather than playing pre-recorded music.
Processional, Reception: Spotify playlists
Seriously one subscription that saved our lives (and our wallets).
Table succulents: The Succulent Source
These ended up being far less expensive than floral centerpieces, like I originally planned. I ordered enough for all our tables with some leftover for about $100. And they worked much better for our 90 degree wedding day. The succulents handled the heat and allowed us to set them up a lot sooner than we could have with flowers.
Votive candles, plastic flatware/plates/cups, faux succulents, chiffon for arch: Amazon
Since there was no kitchen onsite, we decided to go disposable with everything. I can’t say enough good things about Amazon Prime for this sort of situation. I was able to quickly find disposable plates, cups and flatware that looked the part and completed the look.
Photo props, balloons, chalkboard signs, café lights: Target
Cake stands, succulent stands, road signs: custom-made by family
Lanterns: bought as a group from individual
This probably goes without saying, but check Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace, and any other online marketplace for wedding/event decor. It’s really common for people to resell decor they will never use again at a fraction of the price you would pay at a store.
Dining tables, Arch, Entry table: Garrison Rustic
I happen to have married someone who is very talented in carpentry. He made the dining tables from repurposed cable spools and the arch from reclaimed rough-cut oak posts. He welded the frame for the entry table and created the cable detail with the leftover cable from the spools.
Rustic white folding chairs: Abco Party Rentals
These worked great on grass and were only $3 each.
Barn wood photo wall, welcome sign: Maureen Amato
My talented friend created the photo wall and welcome sign in a week.
I ordered my dress less than 3 weeks before the wedding. Yikes! I took a huge gamble. But BHLDN does a great job of offering dress measurements and reviews with pictures. I felt pretty confident the size I ordered would fit, and luckily it did! It only needed to be hemmed, and I was able to find a fantastic local seamstress who had the alteration done in 2 days.
Hair: Bride’s best friend
My planned hair stylist for the day had her baby on the day before our wedding. Panic! Luckily, my best friend had done my hair before in college. Ha! She was actually researching the hairstyle I wanted on YouTube the day of the wedding.
I snagged my most favorite pair of Frye boots for the occasion during one of their Cyber Monday sales. I ended up getting them for half price plus the $25 coupon.
Jewelry: Family heirlooms
I wore my grandma’s antique aquamarine ring and my great grandma’s necklace that I’ve had since I was a little girl. Neither of them are still living, so it meant a lot to be able to wear their beautiful jewelry on this special day.
Want to see more photos from the Garrisons wedding? Stay tuned for the rest of the story in the next few days. ;-)