Although both had been married before, Julie and Brian both knew that this time was different, and they wanted to celebrate the joy of finding a love that is also built on friendship. Thus their “It is never too late for Happily Ever After” theme was born! The couple has spent many holidays and special occasions at The Mountain Top Inn and Resort and knew it would be the prefect spot to say “I do”. It even overlooks the Chittenden Reservoir, where Julie and Brian went kayaking on their very first date.
Their color palette was gray, neutrals, and touches of purple. They also incorporated birch candle holders that were hand cut from family property in New York. There were lots of handmade touches- Julie’s best friend Tracie hand crafted the silk flowers that were in the bouquets and center pieces, and Brian made his famous handmade fudge for favors. The hair piece Julie wore closely resembled the one her mother had worn at her own wedding, 50 years prior, and the rose petals guests tossed had been saved from roses Julie received from Brian throughout their relationship. The kayak oar guest book also has special meaning, as both Julie and Brian love to kayak and it was how they connected on their first date.
Family is number one to both Julie and Brian, so they wanted to involve their family as much as possible. The wedding party consisted of their children and grandchildren. Brian’s son, Kristopher, gave a heartfelt and humorous speech, while Julie’s three daughters, Alaura, Alyssa, and Aimee, put together a speech that went along with the Fresh Price of Bel-Air rap. Their friend Lauren, who first introduced the couple, officiated at the ceremony and was able to tell guests how the couple first met.
Some of Julie and Brain’s favorite moments included the final sendoff where guests made an arch of sparklers the couple went through as they cheered, Tracie and her son Chase, did a reading from Dr. Seuss “Oh the Places You Will Go!”, Julie’s niece, Kelly, also did a reading, and Molly Quinn did an amazing rendition of “I Can’t Help Falling in Love.” Their advice for other couples planning a wedding; “Enjoy every moment of your engagement!”
featured professionals | VENUE, CATERER, & ACCOMMODATIONS: Mountain Top Inn & Resort | WEDDING PLANNER: Chelsea Howe from Mountain Top Inn & Resort | PHOTOGRAPHER: Aspiring Photography by Jessica Thompson | FLORIST: Silk flowers handcrafted by bride’s best friend Tracie Irwin | DJ: Michael Coppinger | VOCALIST: Molly Quinn | CAKE: Centerpiece Cakes by Steph | WEDDING GOWN: Trace of Lace | ALTERATIONS: Make It Sew | TUX/FORMAL WEAR: McNeil and Reedy | HAIR STYLIST: Seguin Ragosta | MAKEUP ARTIST: Cassie Lafaso | INVITATIONS: Mixpic | JEWELRY: Etsy | FAVORS: Fudge homemade by the groom | WEDDING OFFICIANT: Lauren Sullivan | WEDDING REGISTRY: Bed, Bath and Beyond | GIFT TO GROOM FROM BRIDE: A compass engraved “For Our Adventures.”
photo by Letter10 Creative
Classical music wafting through the air, elegantly winding through the gathered group of family and friends – or would you prefer a little Celtic lilt to put a spring in your step on your special day? Or what about that special hymn grandma always used to sing? Or that pop tune or show tune you always sang as a kid - or first danced to as a couple? Or what about something totally different - something composed just for your special day?
When most people think of “wedding music” what pops to mind is often Wagner’s “Bridal Chorus” (“Here comes the bride…”) or Mendelssohn’s “Wedding March,” or perhaps Pachelbel’s “Canon in D.” You might imagine a church organ or perhaps a classical quartet. Many couples do choose some variation on the above for their wedding music - and why not? Classic, elegant choices that are easy to walk to, and that are tested by time, will never go out of style. Would a bride avoid wearing a long gown and decide not to exchange rings simply because everyone else does? Traditional choices can say as much about you as non-traditional choices, if chosen from the heart. This type of connection with tradition and the past can be comforting, sentimental, and certainly can make your decision-making simpler!
But sometimes couples choose music that’s a little different - and again, why not? It’s your day to paint the town - the music will paint the atmosphere and color the feeling of your celebration - why not choose music that has significance for you personally? That touch of you in the music will touch your guests as well as bringing you smiles - or tears - or a lift in your every move. Again, if the tunes that are significant for you are also popular with others, then go for it! If not, the sky’s the limit!
I had the honor of playing for a wedding where the bride had arranged or composed the music for her own wedding - including a special song performed by a friend. At another, the bride commissioned a friend to create medleys of a series of special songs - primarily Broadway songs and hymns, and chose popular but non-traditional classical music for the prelude. Many couples wish to have entirely classical music for their weddings, but prefer to completely avoid the traditional wedding standards. There are too many options to list here, but you may wish to look into music by Bach, Vivaldi, Handel, Haydn, Mozart, for the classic sound that’s not “wedding standard.” And by the way - don’t think of these composers as the stodgy old men you often see in pictures - if Bach really were the person we think of when we see his stiff representation in portrait, do you honestly believe he would have fathered 20 children? Or composed the intensely energetic music he did? Bach, in particular, composed some of the most versatile and awe-inspiring music ever heard - and a great deal of his music has been arranged for many different combinations of instruments, and is often heard at weddings, though never as the standards that could be considered “over-used” - so check him out! I’ve also recently played as recessionals: “Viva La Vida” by Coldplay and “I Want to Hold Your Hand” by the Beatles and “Landler” from Sound of Music; as processionals: “Til’ There Was You” and “Fanny Power.” I’ve played two weddings where the request was for music throughout the ceremony – essentially a soundtrack - a mix of styles, in one case with music continuing even as background for the vows, and the entire ceremony built on musical selections that were particularly special for the couple.
Want to get even more unique? Vermont boasts a huge variety of composers and song writers. If this is of interest, you may wish to contact Steve Klimowski, clarinetist from the ”Classic Consort” - also director of the Vermont Contemporary Music Ensemble – for names of Vermont composers who might suit your style. Why not consider having a special song composed just for your special day? It would lend a whole new meaning to the phrase “playing our song!”
Lisa Carlson is a freelance flutist, performing for weddings and other occasions throughout Vermont and beyond, with musical offerings ranging from a quartet of flute with violin, viola and cello, to solo flute, to duos and trios of flute with harp, violin, piano, cello, oboe, and more. She also teaches flute in Montpelier, Vermont and online to students worldwide.