Ladies and gentlemen, if you’d please pull up your cowboy boots and saddle up, we’re off to Texas for Rachel and Ben’s super sweet, family-oriented Jewish wedding day, beautifully planned by Eclipse Event Co.
First of all, let’s talk about those cowboy boots – those beautiful, floral, bridal cowboy boots. We would sincerely like a pair kicking about STG HQ – what a gorgeous touch!
The theme of the wedding was a marriage of tradition and modernization, with a color scheme in hues of gorgeous greens and glamorous gold accents. This carried through from the stationery to the floristry to the beautiful Alfred Angelo Bridal bridesmaids’ dresses.
Stunning bride, Rachel, also wore Alfred Angelo over her standout DiJore boots.
Another incredibly cute touch was an actual honest-to-goodness PIE BAR! We’re getting hungry just typing the words ‘pie bar’, so we’ll hand over to the beautiful spread of images by Awake Photography, the moving video by Marty Robbins and bride, Rachel, to give you the full lowdown on their Texas knees up.
How we met
Rachel, the bride: We met online, but not on a dating site. It was a unique occurrence where I was online for a class in college and Ben was working on the channel I happened to be in. We got talking, and just didn’t stop.
A pre-decorated, vintage venue
We got married at the Texas Federation Women’s Club Mansion in Austin, TX. We picked the venue for the pre-decorated and vintage feel.
It was simultaneously grand and modern, and took care of a lot of the theme aesthetics we were going for. It was also large enough to hold all our guests for both the ceremony and reception.
Shades of green
We used a wedding planner, Lauren Chumbley with Eclipse Event Co., who was great at taking all points we gave her and turning them into a wedding that represented our desires.
The color scheme, shades of green, was a basic and natural theme we were going for, mixed with the vintage feel of our venue.
We wanted the invitation to be basic and readable, so less of the curly cursive we’ve seen on other invitations.
We didn’t want our guests to feel like they were coming to a ball/gala, we wanted to retain the family and modern feel with some old-fashioned vintage charm. The splash of green and gold was an ode to our green aesthetic.
Simple and elegant hair and makeup
For hair and makeup, I found a wonderful team of artists at a bridal show in Austin a year before called All Dolled Up.
I did a trial with them and a few others, and decided on All Dolled Up because both the hair and makeup artist were able to capture the simple and graceful look I was after.
I knew the classy look with my hair up was what I wanted, and from there, I was relying on my artists to do the rest.
I am no makeup artist, and I wanted to trust the artists to create something based on the very few points I wanted: hair up, classic and simple. They were able to capture this exactly. And I still use my hairdresser every few months for my normal cut and color.
An Alfred Angelo dress
The dress was from Alfred Angelo Bridal, their Sapphire Collection in Austin, TX.
I knew I wanted a dress that would be a showstopper. It’s the one time that you get the chance to wear a ball gown without looking like a crazy person (unless you’re the princess of a small country, of course).
It took a while of trying on styles to find the right one for my body shape, and, surprisingly, what I thought wouldn’t be my favorite, was! The ballgown cut.
I knew it was the one the moment I put it on. It’s a feeling that is hard to explain, but you know what you’re after, and the mirror will prove it to you.
An heirloom bracelet
I wore a beautiful veil, from Alfred Angelo Bridal, that had more embellishments that matched my dress and added to the look I was trying to accomplish.
There is something very traditional about a veil, and I wanted to retain that part of tradition, as other elements were very modern. The mix was something I was after, but I wanted to let it look flawlessly mixed.
I chose to go without a necklace, but wore a large sparkly hair clip and earrings that drew the eye upward to my face.
My bracelet was a heirloom from my husband’s grandmother. She gave it to him to give to the woman he fell in love with. It matched my dress perfectly, and I was more than thrilled to wear it.
Customized cowboy boots
It wouldn’t be a Texas wedding without a pair of cowboy boots. I had my leather cowboy boots made when I was visiting Park City, Utah a year before. I ended up in a customized western boots boutique, DiJore, and I found a pattern in there I fell in love with.
They designed a pair of boots for me, and I wore them under my dress the whole night, through ceremony and reception. I was comfortable and authentic to my roots, and I had a thousand compliments on them when people got a peek under the dress.
The handsome groom
Ben wore a Jos A. Bank suit that he was able to go and pick out and try on. Not only that, but his groomsmen were also able to do this in each of their states (all coming from different places in the country).
He wore all black with a gold tie to accent for a clean, chic look that played up his tall, dark and handsome thing.
Bridesmaids in Alfred Angelo
The bridesmaids wore dresses from Alfred Angelo Bridal, another place they were able to go to in their own states (all coming in from different places in the country) to try on the choices.
I left four choices for the top that all had the same look, but I wanted to make sure my girls were comfortable knowing they had a choice for their different body types.
The color was emerald green, to highlight the greens in our wedding and make the girls stand out with their gold accents of jewelry.
The chuppah was gifted to us by the groom’s mother. It was a piece of her old wedding dress fabric and we used this to design our chuppah. It had a gold engraving in it that was made of fabric from the bride’s veil, and said our names and the date of our wedding.
The ceremony had many special touches. The first being that the bride’s grandfather who was a retired preacher stood under the chuppah and was able to share in the Jewish ceremony with the Rabbi. It was a beautiful combination of traditions and respect.
The ceremony mixed traditional and modern within the ceremony by using the processional mostly as a Jewish processional, but adding touches of a different walking order and the traditional father-daughter walk with the bride.
My favorite part of the ceremony has always been the seven blessings and it was no different for our own wedding. I love the circling and the meaning behind it. I find it to be a true binding of love.
We also kept the tradition of the tisch before the wedding, what the bride likes to call the “Pep Rally” before the ceremony. We had separate tisch events in separate rooms, inviting our closest friends and family, women vs men, to give us advice on their lives, words of encouragement and even a few hype dance moves. It truly is a way to bring yourself to life before you walk down the aisle.
Contemporary music choices
Music was very important to us, so we picked some of our favorite songs instead of sticking with the traditional. The processional songs were: One Love by Hootie and the Blowfish and Come to Me by Goo Goo Dolls. The recessional song was: What I Wouldn’t Do by Serena Ryder.
The first dance song was: I Don’t Dance by Lee Brice, the mother and son song was: Stand By Me by Ben E. King, and the father and daughter song was: I Hope You Dance by Lee Ann Womack and a mix of Centerfield by John Fogerty and Ice Ice Baby by Vanilla Ice
A button bouquet
Our florist was Disch Events, recommended by our coordinator, Lauren Chumbley.
We chose to go with the simple bloom of white peony, dusty miller, safe, star of Bethlehem and white roses for the bridesmaids’ bouquets, the decorations and centerpieces. The men wore simple succulents.
All flowers were designed to look natural and simple, and the florist did a wonderful job of sticking to our vision.
I carried a bouquet of buttons that was handmade by my grandmother, and the florist was able to add greenery of ivy and seeded eucalyptus under it to make it look full and finished.
Our fabulous photographer and videographer
Our photographer from Awake Photography was Paige Budde. I have known Paige since she was a little girl. She took up photography, and I have spent many years watching her images and loving the way she shot and the colors she was able to create through the lens of her camera. She was an easy choice.
The videographer was suggested to us by a family member after seeing prior work of his – Marty Robbins. He did a wonderful job of capturing the day from start to finish so we have something to look back on and relive when we have forgotten the little fun details. I am thrilled to have the tape.
A pie bar
We chose not to have cake at our wedding, as both of us have other favorites.
So instead we chose to get our desserts from Tiny Pies, a local spot in Austin that creates the most delicious baby pies.
We chose flavors like pecan, apple, chocolate, pumpkin and lemon. We also had the highlight and favorite of a cookie sandwich – a local Austin favorite as well called Moojo that creates fresh baked cookies with a scoop of ice cream between. They did this at a stand in the reception ballroom, and the cookie sandwiches went fast!
Our catering was done by the fabulous Pascal’s. They did so much more than just making the food. They had to break down and set up the room from ceremony to reception, and do it all within an hour. The food was absolutely delicious and we got a thousand compliments on the served plates and scrumptious dinner.
An athletic father-daughter dance
For entertainment, we chose to go with a live band and found a fantastic one with Groove Knight. We chose to use their eight-piece band that included a full brass section. They have a male and female singer and they know so many cover songs, it’s amazing.
We chose them because they were able to cater to young and old for music choices, and the dance floor was never empty. I can’t think of a better way to enjoy our reception than a full dance floor. They did exactly what we asked of them and the MC was a great hype man, without being overbearing and talking too much.
Finally, my dad and I did a fun dance for our father-daughter dance, mixing in softball pitching and volleyball. My father coached me in these sports in my youth, and through highschool and college, so the dance became an ode to playing the sports we had enjoyed together and bonded over for so many years.
Pecan praline treats
We did not do favors for our guests, unless they were at the hotel (most were) and for that group, we left them with a large bag of Texas/Austin goodies that you don’t find outside of the state. People complimented us on them and everybody wanted move of the little pecan praline treats from Lammes Candy Store.
Ancestry picture table
One of the special things that we did was have an ancestry picture table when you walk in that had our family lines as far back as four generations on each side.
We were fortunate enough to have images of our family going back this far, and we set up a large round table that had all the images on it, so you could go around and take a look before signing the welcome book.
It was a beautiful way to incorporate family – and especially for the extended family that attended that held the same ancestry line.
Advice to couples currently planning their wedding
Don’t sweat the little stuff. Know that your timeline will not stay on time. Hire a coordinator to worry about that stuff. This is a day for you and your husband, so don’t worry what anyone else thinks/wants/suggests.
And my absolute best advice is make sure if you have a big dress that the bustle will not break. If it does, have a back up plan. You don’t want to spent the night fixing your dress, trust me!
Rachel & Ben’s little white book
Wedding planner – Eclipse Event Co.
Photographer – Awake Photography
Videographer – Marty Robbins
Venue – The Mansion
Bride’s dress and veil – Alfred Angelo Bridal
Bride’s boots – DiJore
Groom’s attire – Jos A. Bank
Bridesmaids – Alfred Angelo Bridal
Hair + Makeup – All Dolled Up
Flowers and Lighting – Disch Events
Band – Groove Knight
Catering – Pascal’s Catering
Pies – Tiny Pies
Cookies and Ice Cream Sandwiches – Moojo
Pecan Pralines – Lammes Candy Store
Dessert Table Styling – Kitsch Event Styling
Photobooth – My Event is the Bomb
Escort Cards and Table Numbers – Scripted Ever After
Chuppah Rental – Mancino Rentals
Linens and Specialty Chairs – Marquee Rentals
Shuttle Service – Uptown Valet
Pedicab Send Off – Metrocycle Pedicab