Got Hitched ~ Tofino Wedding
So here it is the whole shebang!! Matt and I were married at Middle Beach Lodge in Tofino, BC, on May 23rd, I truly never could have imagined that we would have a wedding as beautiful as we did. This was from start to finish, my dream wedding...I'm not a big fan of traditional weddings and Vancouver Island offered a scenic playground that I grew up visiting when I was a child. It's one of my favorite places to escape to and immediately brings me back to my childhood (I think Tofino is also where I fell in love with fog!). So why Tofino? You can read those details in my last post here! We ended up staying at Middle Beach Lodge the Spring prior and we both fell in love with the venue there. We had to book out one full side of the lodge in order to have our wedding at Middle Beach, which meant no kids (the ones that came got the big rooms!) and we could invite no more than 60 guests which was the max capacity for our dining hall. We ended up with 52 adults and 6 kids- perfect! Kim James sent photos to me almost immediately! There were so many gorgeous photos that it took me almost 2 weeks to narrow things down... eep!! I hope you enjoy them as much as I do!
NOTHING beats having your most beloved people in life come together and surround you with affection, the emotions were riding high and palatable the whole weekend and when our guests started arriving the evening before the wedding I knew I would never have an experience like this again, lucky doesn't even begin to describe how I felt. Our parents prepped and hosted a wonderful welcome BBQ, with Matt's dad Brian on the grill and when twilight hit, the bonfire started and everyone hit the beach to welcome the moon and the stars. I was really sick (of course!! Stress will do that!) but I needed some campfire time too and couldn't imagine going to sleep before hanging out with everyone. I made my way down the winding path to the bonfire and had my wow moment of the weekend- it was the one I had pictured in my head while planning Tofino for our wedding, the sky was a beautiful deep blue and in the moonlight I could see couples walking hand in hand, friends exploring with their children and playing along the shoreline, strumming of guitars, and laughter...I'm tearing up thinking about how beautiful it all was. If the weekend had ended there I would have been satisfied but as things were we had an entire day to look forward to!
The morning of the wedding my best friends came to drink champagne with me and make my wedding bouquet while my beautiful girlfriend Negar did my makeup. Matt and I were planning a "reveal" photoshoot before the wedding so we could take most of the photos in the morning and spend time with our guests after the ceremony. I had my dress made locally by a seamstress in East Van who created my dress for under $300!! Lily had initially created a one-piece dress for me but due to my lack of fashion design, the dress didn't quite flatter me so I made a last minute decision a few weeks before the wedding to cut the dress into a two-piece...Lily worked her magic and it turned out perfectly! The wedding day zoomed by but feeling my best was so comforting as it let me focus on the importance of everything else happening around me, I would have hated to miss any of it! Every emotional nerve in my body was tingling the day of our wedding, I could feel it in my finger tips, on every muscle of my face and with every breath I took. It was a moment that lasted the first second I saw Matt in the morning until I closed my eyes at night and I was glad that all of those feelings claimed me on our wedding day.
A little about our ceremony: I wanted to surprise my parents by finding a musician to play "Here Comes the Sun" as I walked down the aisle, this was the same song my mom walked to. I thought it would be perfect to ask my dad's brother Tom to come and play since I wasn't able to invite my dad's side of the family due to the small size of our wedding (My Grandma Mulder had 15 sons and daughters! A Mulder gathering is about the size of a small village these days!), what I didn't know is that my Uncle Tom also played live at my parents wedding 40 years ago! This was one of the most special moments of the day for me and I'm so glad that he was able to fill that missing piece of our wedding puzzle. We chose to get married on the beach at our lodge, we had each guest bring a white rock to the beach to create a circle that would symbolize the strength of our new start as husband and wife. After the ceremony we decided on a non-traditional group shot which had our guests fly paper airplanes over us in a nod to Matt's career as an airplane mechanic and our love of travel.
There are a ton of thank yous that I added to the bottom of this blog post to spare you from all the reading, but briefly I have to thank my parents & my new parent in-laws for all of their love, support and time, the wedding wouldn't have happened without you. Hailey, Janessa & Jen there are practical things to thank you for but they mean nothing in comparison to your friendship, thank you for being my unsung heroes. My brother Jesse for being the funniest and most thoughtful MC a sister could ever ask for, I cannot believe that you organized a "wedding blues band" and wrote us a song...seriously the most surprising and best gift I've ever received.
A special thank you to my Uncle Tony who has always inspired me to be a kid at heart and never forget to create and play in the wild, and to my grandpa who at 91 continues to make everyone laugh and appreciate the world, your stories encourage us to do more with our lives. And lastly to Tadjia (lovingly Heinz) if you hadn't called Matt 10 years ago and dragged him out I would have never met him, you will always live on through us.
"That it will never come again is what makes life so sweet" ~ Emily Dickinson
There were so many details that made our wedding so lovely and so many friends and family that helped to make that possible!! To my MOM...oh my goodness what didn't she do?? Ok here's the list and it's a long one; BAKING my dream cookie bar come true, SEWING the table runners, the kids bow ties and she surprised me with skirt lining for the epic blue tutu that I wore in our pre-wedding shoot (It would have been see-thru otherwise and no one wants to see that!!) FLORAL she put all the little bouquets together before we left for Tofino, they were numbered and organized so perfectly that the staff setting up said it was their favorite wedding because it was so well organized- it took her an entire day and it looked amaaaaaazing. My parents hauled everything over in their RV for us as most of what we did for the wedding was DIY, including the 60 white painted rocks that my dad sprayed for our wedding circle. My dad is the guy behind the scenes that helps me prep, prime and finish most things in my life- thank you dad for always helping me with everything. I love you both to the ends of earth.
Keeping things local:
I really wanted to do most of our wedding ourselves, so I called on some very creative people I know to help!
My Aunty Linda did all the calligraphy which added such a beautiful elegant touch to our decor. My Aunty Linda and Donna-Lee along with my Uncles Brad and Terry threw us the most beautiful pre-wedding party that was beyond both Matt and I's expectations it was such a thoughtful gift, thank you so much!!
My talented friend Anita made my STUNNING shawl with a few weeks notice, her company is Make More Happy and I highly recommend you check it out (link at bottom of post).
Lillian did all my printing and designed all of my invitations etc, I do everything with her company because Made In Print does it all and they are the best!!! You should be doing all your printing through them too...so go see them soon!
Katherine owner and designer of Foe & Dear made my stud earrings and had to deal with our crazy while making our wedding bands for us, she also inspired the books that my parents and I folded for the decor (Katherine has the most lovely booth at craft markets and displays her jewelry on folded books and antiques, it's so cute!!).
Janessa for being by my side throughout my dress fittings, I know I shocked you when I came up with the two piece idea but you didn't even blink at my craziness I love it when friends trust my crazy!!! Thank you Janessa for throwing me a perfect wedding shower, complete with home-made Norwegian waffles (I was seriously in heaven, I don't even think I could have come up with that surprise for myself!!!!).
Janessa, Jen & Hailey for organizing my stagette... when asked what I did or didn't want for my stagette I said anything goes but I required a glowing bra...let me tell you Janessa delivered on this request...I will covet it always. Jen & Hailey also picked out flowers for me on the way to Tofino and made my bouquet the morning of, it was perfection!
My beautiful girlfriend Negar and her husband Eli, made the long journey over with their newborn Ezra, she accepted my invitation to come before I even knew she was pregnant! Negar is a gifted makeup artist and graced-my-face with her skills for the wedding day, she doesn't know how much confidence it gave me to take wedding photos and be my best self throughout the day. It made me feel incredibly special to have her by my side and I'm not sure I would have trusted anyone else to do it.
The Blues Brother's: Jesse, Uncle Tom, Dad & the mysterious Blake Williams- wow thank you for the most unexpected and perfect gift. Blake I know you would have added even more wonderful to the performance, sorry your were feeling so terrible, people are still asking about my "Uncle Blake".
Middle Beach Lodge was the PERFECT wedding venue for us, from the accommodations, to the staff, the food and every little thing in between our minds were blown that we could have such a dream weekend. Middle Beach Lodge provided us with our wedding planner Victoria. Victoria was a lifesaver for me and we had never even met. She nailed every detail and was just there every time I got in touch with her. I didn't even know I needed a wedding planner when I started planning, then quickly realized there is no sane wedding without one!! Thank you so much Middle Beach for having the most amazing team working for you.
The first person and the last person to thank is Kim James Photography, without you there are only words, with you there is a lush and vivid story - thank you for helping us keep our memories lush and vivid for years to come.
"Happiness is only real when shared" ~ Christopher McCandless
Venue: Middle Beach Lodge
Makeup: Negar Hooshmand
Shawl: Make More Happy
Wedding Rings & Studs: Foe & Dear
Stationary: Made In Print
Photography: Kim James Photography
Garland & Boutineers: Crab Apple Floral
Fabric For Dress: Rokko Sarees & Fabrics
Seamstress: Lily (604)435-8653
Necklace & Bracelet: Sarah Mulder Jewelry