I first met Camden and Ashley my first week at Iowa State during Ashley and I’s sorority recruitment. Fast forward a few years after I started dating one of Camden’s best friends, we all became very close. I always said when they got married I would plan their wedding to help start off my portfolio of events. So from being with them at their engagement to helping guide them through the planning process, was so fun! The only real setback the couple and I had while planning was the terrible “land hurricane”, Derecho that swept through Cedar Rapids with a vengeance. Most of the town sadly was extremely damaged from the 140 mph winds that came through and destroyed a large portion of the area. Luckily the venue survived with minimal damage. The beautiful tree which was the focal point of the ceremony was surprisingly unscathed, while the trees around weren’t so lucky.
Starting off the initial planning process, Ashley really enjoyed my previous weddings simplistic elegant look for the decor. So we ran with that theme throughout the event. The couple has always been extremely “go with the flow”, so we wanted to reflect that in their wedding! They both grew up in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Their venue of choice was referred to them by a friend of a friend who had been married there previously! Koru Berry Farm in the Amana Colonies was a match made in heaven for their wedding! The owners Deda & Neil were so laid back and willing to help make their day perfect in every way possible! From having newly extended reception hall to multiple ceremony sites, they are always looking for ways to stay up to date and trendy with their site! Another fun perk which the guests loved, is owners have farm animals at the edge of the property that guests can interact with and pet! This included brand new baby goats, sheep, and even a donkey! My personal favorite part of this venue was the creativity they put in their new renovations. Deda is a talented artist who curated the perfect light fixtures for the venue. If this sounds small, it might be for other places but the chandelier and matching standing lights perfectly complemented the centerpieces and decor without sealing the show.
With the decor, Ashley wanted the whole place to glow with candles so we made it happen! Putting different size vases down the handmade tables (courtesy of Deda & Neil), with some light greenery weaved throughout, the scene was set to make the whole reception hall feel like it was a perfect scene in a movie. For the ceremony, to accent the beautiful, huge tree, the couple stood in front of, we found a super long linen to drape over the branches to give some background as well as more dimension. The floral addition to their decor was a show stopping floral installation that hung behind the head table that drew everyone’s eyes to the center of the room.
For dessert, Camden (the groom) was adamant that he did not want cake and only donuts for the dessert during the reception (he later decided that cutting a cake was still fun). So for the donuts, the couple had a friend build a huge donut hanging board from scratch! It was an awesome eye catching piece that made the dessert feel special and the donuts were a hit! Another special touch they had was a “memory lane”. The way to the ceremony site was a special, tucked away path through part of the berry vines. I created a custom acrylic sign to direct guests to their ceremony, and then down the path we had shepherds hooks with photos hanging on them from special moments during their relationship. There was also a second acrylic sign for the announcement of the new couple along with their wedding date. These signs are a great opportunity for a photo op for your guests as well! My favorite moment from their ceremony was the live singers they had for the processionals for the wedding party and family. Camden and Ashley have a few close friends who volunteered to sing during the ceremony. The kicker was that they lived 7 hours away but practiced over the phone and only 3 times in person and it couldn’t have been more perfect. There wasn’t a dry eye in the place when Ashley and her mother made their entrance. My favorite moment from the reception was when Camden’s mom surprised him with a mix of their favorite songs for their mother son dance. The entire crowd was loving it and cheering them on!
To wrap up the Chicchelly wedding, I would say that their friends and family is what made the whole day extra special. Never count out the people that love you the most because they want your day to be as perfect as possible! From referring you to awesome vendors, to helping light what seemed like a million candles, Cam and Ashley’s friends and family helped me make the day happen!
Until next time, XO
Special Thanks to the Vendors:
Koru Berry Farm, Venue
Forever Green Studios, Photography
Bohemian Blossom Floral, Florist