November 3, 2018
Dawn and Eric’s romantic Aspen Beach wedding in September was so much fun! The day was relaxed and the evening ceremony on the beach was absolutely perfect for them since they had their first ‘official’ date there too!!
Eric and I met on and online dating site. I saw his profile and thought he was absolutely adorable. I sent him a message and we started chatting. We originally met half way at a coffee shop in Olds and our first official date ended up at the lake where we were married.
I asked him. We were downstairs working on a home project when I got down on one knee and proposed. Of course being a man, he thought I was kneeling down for something else… Jokes on him! I had a ring custom made, with a stone passed down to him from his grandfather that he had mined and polished.
Eat Local, Drink Local was the inspiration for this wedding. We wanted the event to have a Farm to Table / Farmer’s Market feel to it. We achieved this by focusing our attention on a few different elements. First the bar. We constructed a pallet bar with our inspiration being a lemonade stand. All of our alcohol was from local vendors that I knew from hosting an annual art show/ craft beer and wine tasting. It really was a fantastic collaboration from some amazing vendors in the area. We got all our beer from Snake Lake Brewing Co in Sylvan Lake. We opted for Mead (or honey wine) from Grey Owl Meadery in Alder Flats. The wine came from Shady Lane Estates in Barrhead, which has also recently started a craft distillery, West of the 5th. For hard alcohol we decided to try something different and went with Moonshine from West of the 5th, however we wanted to maintain our Farmer’s Market feel. We asked our bartender (and friend) to come up with some custom drinks for us; giving him a mickey of each of the 4 flavors and told him to have fun! He came up with some amazing cocktails and we named them with fun names like Grandma’s Apple Pie, Homemade Jam, and A Taste of Home.
Next came the food. Since we had a sunset wedding on the beach, and the wedding was more about the party with good friends, we opted to skip out on a traditional meal and started the reception at 8:30 at night. In its place we went with a Charcuterie/grazing table. We purchased all the pickles from the local market, the veggies came from a local greenhouse just off Hwy 12 and the fruit came from my favourite BC Grower at the market. The cheese was sourced from Sylvan Star Cheese in Sylvan Lake. The meat all came from a local butcher and fabulous friends, 6th on the Block in Gull Lake. They also plated, did all the setup and catered for us throughout the night.
The flowers were done by me. After being in the floral industry off and on for almost 20 years and having post secondary education in horticulture and floral design, I really couldn’t hand this department over to anyone else. And I am really glad I did them myself! I had flowers ordered from a grower just outside Red Deer but at the last minute I had an emergency and couldn’t make it out to pick them up. Luckily, our neighbors came through and I had 3 gardens at my disposal. I think the funnest (that’s not a word) detail were the stems of fresh raspberries, used as foliage and filler, that I would not have gotten if I had stuck to the original plan. The day before the wedding we had a decorating crew of around 15 ladies all pitching in and decorating tables, cutting veggies and setting up tables. I love my ladies and I couldn’t have done any of this without them!!
The ceremony was held at Aspen Beach Provincial Park, which was where we had our first real date. Our usher greeted everyone with infused water in mason jars and we had a “Snuggle Up” station which housed warm blankets, in case anyone was cold. It was so windy that day that setting up was impossible, however the weather held out until right after we were finished pictures, after the ceremony. The first raindrop hit the car window as I was getting into the car. The snow followed by the end of the following week. Talk about dodging a bullet!!
As I turned around for the first time to see my future wife, after all her hard work over the past year, diligent planning and sale shopping it all came together in one moment that words can’t describe. As she walked down the stairs in our beautiful home, I knew I was the luckiest man with the most stunning bride, and to think she chose me!
Don’t get too caught up on tradition and stay true to yourself. Weddings today don’t have to be stuffy, formal events, based on activities solely done to keep your mother happy. Do things that make you and your partner happy, and not to please everyone else, unless of course they are paying for it and then learn to compromise and communicate. Don’t lose focus of what is important, at the end of the day this is a party to celebrate the love that you and your partner share. Your guests aren’t going to know that you had planned certain details that ended up getting forgotten or changed for whatever reason, be flexible in your choices and allow it come together naturally.
Congratulations Dawn and Eric!! I wish you every happiness in the future!!
Thanks to the following talented vendors for being a part of the Derrien’s wedding day!
Officiant: Barb Fenske
Caterer: 6th on the Block
Hair: Renew Eco Salon
Makeup: Beauty By Sara
Bridal Gown: Novia Mia Red Deer
Suits: The Bridal Centre
Rentals: Copper Cloud Events
Florals, Planning, Concept and Design: The Boho Baby Momma
If you’re recently engaged or planning a wedding and you’d like to have a photographer that’ll take the stress away from the photo part of the day so you can just enjoy yourself, we should talk!
I’m currently booking weddings and engagements for the 2019 (limited dates left!) and 2020 wedding season!
My bucket list includes:
In North America
SEE ——> Anywhere in the Southern States where I can actually use “y’all” in a sentence and not get looked at funny
Around the World