Erin & Andy’s Chic and Modern Circle-Themed Wedding-in-the-Round
Happy Monday! I’ve been wanting to share Erin and Andy’s funky and unique non-traditional wedding with you since the moment it plopped into my inbox– in fact it was supposed to go up Friday but I had blog layout issues after a theme update (ahhh #bloggerproblems)
BUT I’m not letting that little snafu keep me from sharing the awesomeness with you today. It’s waited long enough. Here’s Jacalyn of JMM Photography — responsible for the beautiful, dreamy photos — to tell you more about the wonderful celebration:
Erin & Andy’s chic downtown soiree was modern mixed with a whole lot of amazing. Ensuring each guest felt like they were part of the evening was very important to the couple. They accomplished this in so many ways – including an intimate, beautiful ceremony in the round, a reception layout that was more lounge & mingle than formal sit-down as well as food & dessert selections that catered to vegans, vegetarians, gluten free, dairy free, as well as nut free. In addition, the couple chose to use eco-friendly paper flowers exclusively for decor and a beaded bouquet for the bride. Add in fabulous music, signature cocktails and a rockin’ photo booth and you have the recipe for a fabulous slightly off the beaten path wedding.
How beautiful is this sun-kissed shot of the pair? We’re also very lucky to have here the lovely Erin herself to tell us more about the two of them and their special day:
Andy and I are a pair that loves our hometown of Cincinnati, but also loves to explore. After college (we both graduated from Ohio University, but didn’t know each other), we both lived away from Cincinnati for a nearly a decade (in fact, we both lived in London at the same time, but, again, didn’t know each other!) before moving back and finally meeting one another though the magic of online dating.
We enjoy live music, food, spending time outdoors, exercising and quality time with friends and family. And more than anything, we love to travel and experience these things in different countries and cities.
Our honeymoon took us around the globe to the Maldives, Sri Lanka and UAE. We brought home the best souvenir ever from our trip — our first child (it’s a BOY!) arrives in June.
We did a “wedding in the round” – our friends and family both stood and sat in a circle with us and our officiant in the center. It was like a giant hug with so much positive energy projected by our loved ones towards us in center– the most amazing moment of our lives. An unforeseen benefit of the wedding in the round is that our ceremony photos have our family and friends in the background – it was so special to see the expressions on the faces of our parents.
Andy and I wrote our own vows as a series of promises, which included both lighthearted and serious ones. The wedding was the first time we read them to each other – it was full of surprises and happiness.
Andy and I wanted to have an event that was a little different than traditional weddings seen in Cincinnati. We decided a cocktail party, dinner-by-the-bite was ideal for us.
When we started out, we didn’t have a “theme” per se – we just wanted our party to have bold pops of color while still being sophisticated. We also wanted to integrate the location we were engaged – a spiral granite rock sculpture at the Adler Planetarium in Chicago.
(Read more about their story on their wedding site)
During the planning process, we also found Andy’s tie, which ultimately inspired the color palette and helped us solidify the “circle” theme – which we carried throughout the design – lighting, ceremony, invitations, koozies, furniture, etc.
We decided to forgo traditional flowers for beaded crystal bouquets/boutonnieres and paper accent flowers. This was a combination of the fact that I adore bling and indecision what color flowers I wanted when we first started planning. 🙂
For our reception, we wanted to get the party rockin’ as quickly as possible so we did dinner-by-the-bite, rather than a traditional seated dinner. Dinner included a slider bar, “Cincinnati Chili” phyllo dough cups and a mix of other savories for folks to enjoy throughout the evening. Dessert from The Bonbonerie was also mini-dessert bites. The lounge seating encouraged folks to mix and mingle – and shake it on the dance floor.
We added some other little touches which included inside jokes, memories, and nicknames, including wind-up bride & groom mice, DIY tissue flowers for the photo booth backdrop, personalized beverage koozies, and signature cocktails.
In lieu of the traditional glass clinking for the bride and groom to kiss, we did a “Kiss Cam.” We made a list of friends and family and throughout the night our awesome DJ, Megan, would call them up in front of everyone and have them kiss. How they kissed was how we were supposed to kiss. It was so much fun – we only wish we had the time to call more folks up for kisses!
Ask your day-of vendors how they manage their schedule of the day. We didn’t ask this, but got super lucky that we had the best team ever! Our photographer, Jacalyn at JMM Photography, was organized and kept the photographs both before and after the ceremony quickly moving (in addition to capturing the day in a way we couldn’t have imagined!). And if you can have someone coordinate the schedule of events at your wedding itself (like our awesome wedding coordinator Julie), the day-of stress melts away.
Think hard about how much detail work you want to put into your day. For example, our venue was a beautiful blank canvas. When you have a blank canvas, however, you have to put a lot of thought and effort into the décor and furniture (again, thanks for Cincy Event Planning for helping us define our vision). We loved the outcome of our efforts, but personalization cost and time adds up quickly.
Huge thanks to Jacalyn for sending her gorgeous images my way, and congratulations Erin and Andy! I wish you guys a lifetime of married bliss! 🙂
Photographer: Jacalyn Mains with JMM Photography
Ceremony & Reception Venue: The Center Cincinnati
Equipment Rentals: All Occasions Event Rental
Event Planner: Julie Schmidt at Cincy Event Planning
DJ & Lighting: Megan Meyers at Party Pleasers
Furniture / Decor Rentals: Prime Time Party Rental
Caterer:Savor Catering & Events
Cake Designer: The BonBonerie
Dress: Maggie Sotero from Bridal & Formal
Suit: Hugo Boss
Hair: Mary Beth Mitchell
“Florist” (Beaded Crystal Bouquets, Corsages & Boutonnieres): BridalBouquetsbyKy on Etsy
Videography: Jason Merkt
Photo Booth: Framester
Image submission via Two Bright Lights