Lord of the Rings fans, rejoice! Amelia and Luke’s wildlife sanctuary wedding has all the whimsical and non-traditional wedding inspiration you could ever want! The couple threw tradition to the wind and curated a day that was all about their love, their connection with nature, and their incredible friends and family who helped them pull off the entire event. Not only did they host their special day at their property but they created every piece of décor and the bride made her wedding dress! Every element was a celebration of nature, including the unity ceremony in which the couple planted a tree using soil from each of their childhood homes. We can hardly put into words how much this wedding warms our souls and how grateful we are Payton Marie Photography was there to capture every unbelievable moment!
Amelia and Luke
The biggest driving factor for all decision making was to make our day completely and authentically us. We scrapped many traditions to make our entire day sculpted to what would make us happy and feel genuine as we declared and celebrated our love for each other.
Everything for our wedding was DIY, except our photographer. All of our decorations, tables, setup and even our venue was DIY. We got married in a wildlife sanctuary and earth shelter community where we live. We lightly landscaped the areas for the ceremony and reception. For our ceremony spot, we cleared and planted fresh ryegrass right before a big rain, and it was perfectly lush and dreamy for the day-of. We also made an altar from tree stumps and moss, as well as an arc of flowers under an old oak tree.
Groom Entrance – “Concerning Hobbits” from The Lord of the Rings soundtrack
Bride’s Entrance – “La Vie En Rose” by Laura & Anton
Recessional – “You Do Something to Me” by Ella Fitzgerald
The entire day was the best of our lives, but two moments in particular really stand out. First, we were advised not to hold back on our first kiss because it was a moment we would want to hold close for the rest of our lives. So, we took that advice to heart and did a full dip as all of our guests laughed and cheered! Second, after the recessional, we had a few moments to breathe and soak it all up. We looked into each other’s eyes and cried, hugged, and kissed because we couldn’t believe how happy we were. It was a moment filled with emotion, laughter, and pure bliss!
For our reception spot, we strung lights between the trees and got silent generators to light up the woods all around the tables and dance floor. We had sculptures, taper candles, and even wooden candle holders we made ourselves. The day ended up being colder than planned, so we also had fire pits, hot drinks, and a wheelbarrow full of blankets for our guests. It was a huge undertaking but, ultimately, an amazing adventure!