Nick and I are officially husband and wife, not even three years after we met. It’s pretty amazing what life can bring you when you take some crazy chances and make room for new things to materialize.
Better late than never: Here are the details and a few dozen photos of our wedding day!
For basically my whole life and for reasons I don’t need to explain here, the number and date 9.21 has been significant to me. It’s my lucky number, time, and day. It fell on a Friday this year and I decided not to make things difficult and just make our wedding day September 22… but as the months flew by and we got caught up in planning details, I realized it was actually very important to me for September 21 to be our wedding day. It sounds silly, but sometimes you want to make childhood dreams come true after years of settling and sacrificing for less. And because Nick is amazing, he agreed to have a special moment all to ourselves on September 21—at 9:21 am over our favorite meal together: breakfast, on the back patio of our new home with Harper the pup in tow—where we would sign the marriage certificate and relish in our story, alone. It did the trick and was enough for me to feel like my lucky number was a premonition all along.
Our Wedding Day
Our ceremony and reception were both held at the Montclair Civic Center in Montclair Park in Denver. It’s a quaint little historic house that seats about 65 people inside—perfect for our small and intimate wedding.
Our vision was simple: bare bones, no frills, and whatever we do prioritize, we do with deliberate thought and care. Our priorities were: a meaningful ceremony, a reception that feels like a dinner party that we’re hosting, delicious food, and a beautiful bouquet.
Location: Montclair Civic Center
Wedding coordinators: Leah Brinks and Brittany Schoede (two of my work-wives from CH&L and ML, good friends, and amazing event-planning geniuses)
Caterer: Footers Catering (highly recommend these guys) They served everything family style!
Musicians: Emily Lewis, violin; David Thomas Bailey, guitar (from Swallow Hill Music)
Floral design: The Ruffly Rose (our favorite!)
Seating chart and programs: Blair Rosen, our matchmaker 🙂
Engagement ring and wedding bands: Sarah O. Jewelry (I’ll never go anywhere else)
Hair and makeup: Moi!
Photography: Be Boulder Photography
WE SAID NO TO:
A first look: We spent the night before together, arrived together, got ready together, and just spent as much time together as possible… because we kind of like each other. We didn’t need to pretend we hadn’t seen each other in our wedding garb already.
A wedding party: We wanted our entire guest list to include people we could have easily envisioned standing up there with us.
Decor: We went with white linens (provided by Footers Catering) and super-small centerpieces by The Ruffly Rose. We borrowed the table numbers and that’s about it.
A traditional wedding dress: I wanted my dress to match the feel of the venue. I also wanted to spend less than $250. Boom.
A traditional ceremony: I’ll explain in a sec.
A traditional wedding cake: We opted to just grab some Whole Foods cakes, have them plated in the back room, and then brought out to guests. We had Footers Catering create a small cutting cake just for us.
Dancing: We decided against trying to fit a dance floor and a band into the evening.
Nick and I got ready together in the upper room of the venue, along with our favorite friends and family who helped us with all the details.
(I like him.)
Before guests arrived, Nick and I took some photos alone. Eleanor Williamson of Be Boulder Photography is amazing (she also took our kind-of-engagement photos in Boulder).
Our good friends Liz and Roland were our officiants! They proceeded first down the steps to our outdoor ceremony on the lawn.
We all walked down the aisle to a string-duo version of Sleeping At Last’s cover of “I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles)” by The Proclaimers. Incredibly beautiful, and appropriate. 😉
Next came the groom with his mother and sister.
Then I walked down the aisle accompanied by my parents.
We originally wanted to officiate our own ceremony (in Colorado you can do that), but then we realized it might be nice to have people up there with us who can guide things a bit. Nick was the officiant for Liz and Roland’s wedding, and they’re such good friends to us both that it felt appropriate. They were also the first friends Nick was excited to introduce me to after about five seconds of dating. 🙂 They did such a great job, and we felt so comfortable up there with them.
They said some words of introduction, and then Nick and I each had words for our guests—a sort of “best man” speech—for and about each other. This was something I felt strongly about; I didn’t want to stand up there and not address the crowd. I wanted to share with them what this day and what this man means to me. I am so glad we did it this way. It felt so meaningful and infused with our unique personalities.
(Our wonderful friends and wedding planners, Brittany and Leah)
After our speeches, I had a secretly arranged special tribute to Nick, because… I like him. Long story short: He shakes the hand of every student at the beginning of every class—to make each kid feel seen and cared about. He goes out of his way to do so many things for so many people. He makes me feel seen, heard, truly listened to. So I wanted every single guest to come up and shake his hand, to say thank you for what he’s done for them and/or for what he’s done for me that they’ve been witness to. (There are a million photos from this part of the ceremony, so I’ll just share two: one of Nick shaking hands with his dad and my dad.)
After all the guests had all shaken his hand, Nick shook the hands of Liz and Roland and then me. This sequence below is one of my favorites.
Then we exchanged vows (which we wrote together), rings, and kisses!
We headed to the cocktail hour, where the string duo played jazz classics and we mingled with friends. We also took about 15 minutes to take family photos.
After the cocktail hour, we all found our seats for dinner, speeches, and cake. We opted out of photography during the reception, and I think that was a good choice. We wanted dinner to feel private, cozy, and intimate.
The reception ended at 9 and, of course, a group of us all went out to The Spot Bar & Grill afterwards. And after we’d worked up a sweat jamming out to 90s tunes and taking questionable shots of tequila, Nick and I picked up a Cosmo’s pizza on the way back to our room at the Moxy in Cherry Creek (the sweetest gift from Liz and Roland).
I am still so in awe of how perfect everything was, how calm and present we both were, and how the day reflected everything we care about. At the end of the weekend, I realized that 9.22 now means more to me than 9.21, and I can’t wait to celebrate both special days for years to come.