i love farm weddings » a farm wedding inspiration blog

From Stacy Able Photography :
“Their wedding centered around a barn at the Sycamore Farms in Southern Indiana. The couple, both professors at Indiana University, wanted a wedding full of local flavor which included some of the best farm to table catering by the local focused restaurant Farm Bloomington. Also local were the florals grown and arranged in Indiana by Harvest Moon. The brides Amsale gown was donned with an African sash and borrowed from a bridesmaid.”

Jen Matt Bloomington Indiana Stacy Able Photography01

Jen Matt Bloomington Indiana Stacy Able Photography02

Jen Matt Bloomington Indiana Stacy Able Photography03

Jen Matt Bloomington Indiana Stacy Able Photography04

Jen Matt Bloomington Indiana Stacy Able Photography05

Jen Matt Bloomington Indiana Stacy Able Photography06

Jen Matt Bloomington Indiana Stacy Able Photography07

Jen Matt Bloomington Indiana Stacy Able Photography08

Jen Matt Bloomington Indiana Stacy Able Photography09

Jen Matt Bloomington Indiana Stacy Able Photography10

Jen Matt Bloomington Indiana Stacy Able Photography11

Jen Matt Bloomington Indiana Stacy Able Photography12

Jen Matt Bloomington Indiana Stacy Able Photography13

Jen Matt Bloomington Indiana Stacy Able Photography14

Jen Matt Bloomington Indiana Stacy Able Photography15

Jen Matt Bloomington Indiana Stacy Able Photography16

Jen Matt Bloomington Indiana Stacy Able Photography17

Jen Matt Bloomington Indiana Stacy Able Photography18

Jen Matt Bloomington Indiana Stacy Able Photography19

Jen Matt Bloomington Indiana Stacy Able Photography20

Jen Matt Bloomington Indiana Stacy Able Photography21

The story, from Jen and Matt:
“We started looking for venues in late January. We wanted something rustic that would show off some of the natural beauty of southern Indiana to all our guests coming in from out of town and be less formal than many standard wedding venues. We went to some places that were a bit too rustic for Matt’s taste—he drew the line at having his 90 year old grandmother use a port-a-john at the wedding. When we came across Sycamore Farm, it was still in the process of being renovated for event use. We could tell it had potential, though, and we’re so glad we went with it. It really did turn out beautifully.

“The wedding dress has a nice story behind it. It was on its third wedding with us. It was originally worn by the sister of one of the bride’s best friends. Then it was passed along to the best friend. Then it was passed along to Jen. The stipulation at each passing was that the sash had to change color. I think it went from champagne, to burnt orange, to the blue west African print that Jen used. It was neat to have a dress with a legacy.

“The first dance song was “To Make You Feel My Love,” written and originally performed by Bob Dylan, covered about 10 years ago by Billy Joel, then covered again very recently by Adele. It’s a beautiful song, the lyrics quietly capture a couple of inside jokes between the bride and groom, and it’s many renditions help it connect in some way with everyone at the wedding.”

Congratulations, Jen and Matt! Happy wishes to you both!

Bride’s Sash: Dutch Wax-style African print from  http://www.aknfabrics.com/ altered by A Perfect Fit
Day of Planner: Tom Clifford with the Farm Bloomington
Wedding Reception Music: Indy Express
Wedding Ceremony Music: The Underhills
Wedding invitations: Etsy
Groomsman attire: Grooms own
Makeup: Caitlin Holmes
Hair: Felicia Pafford, at Bounce Studio
Florals: Harvest Moon Flowers  
Catering: Farm Bloomington


  • May 6, 2013 - 6:00 pm

    Christine - Darling wedding – looks so inviting!ReplyCancel

  • April 9, 2014 - 1:42 pm

    Stephanie Miller - I saw photos of the Sycamore Farm on here and I absolutely love the look of the place. How/where can I get more information on this place?ReplyCancel

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This month I decided to do something a little different and show variations of yellow centerpieces. Yellow is so happy, bright and fun that it’s the perfect hue for our May color inspiration! While traditionally centerpieces are based around a floral design, they don’t always have to be. There are great ideas happening with fruit, fabric and re-purposed pieces. Centerpieces started appearing on tables with the upper classes (of course!) because they had servants to serve them meals, the center of the table became a place to display seasonal floral arrangements or other festive ideas! When weddings became the larger affairs like the ones of today, the idea caught on to use the middle of the table as a decorative showplace! Centerpieces are the place on the table to really wow your guests just remember to be true to your surroundings and make sure they make sense with the feel of your wedding!




photo credits: Tool box centerpiece, Twine wrapped vases, Bark vase, Flowers and limes, Small arrangement in white vases, Pinwheels

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I spied these awesome free printable maps over at I Heart Family Travels and knew I just had to share them with you. There are so many ways you could incorporate these into your farm wedding! Here are just a few of my ideas…

1. PLACEMATS at your tables. It doesn’t take much to print these paper placemats out, and have something cute and entertaining for your guests to read more about you while they dine. And another good part? They are recyclable at the end of the evening! You could make one that tells your traveling love story (great if you have been long distance sweethearts during your relationship). Here’s an example to get you thinking.

Free US map printable - perfect for a farm wedding

2. At your GUEST BOOK table, it would be so fun to have a map out for your guests to add a sticker showing where they came from. This is GREAT if you have friends and family that have come from near and far to share in your wedding day!

Free US map printable - customizable for a wedding guest map

3. Show your guests where you’re heading on your HONEYMOON. I made up this one to get you thinking, and it shows the awesome world map printable too in case you are world travelers. Of course, this is a honeymoon made of dreams, but maybe, just maybe, one of you is having an around the world adventure!

Free world map printable and customizable

4. Other ideas? Use either of these maps (US or world) to show your guests where you’ve traveled to as a couple, where you hope to go, where you’ve lived. I’ve actually already made ones for our family travels to hang up at home, so maybe you just want to that too. Like I said, too fun not to share! Here’s the example from I Heart Family Travels! You can see their post (which gives great details on how easy it is to customize and their ideas for them) and download the maps as well here.


  • May 3, 2013 - 7:59 pm

    Nathan @ Artemis Stationery - These maps are well doneReplyCancel

  • August 25, 2013 - 11:26 am

    Sara - Hi,
    I love the maps that you’ve created. Awesome idea. Can I just ask how you put pins and lines in the map? Because the only option that I see when I download the maps, is to change the title on the upper banner and nothing else!

    • August 25, 2013 - 8:53 pm

      Emily - Hi Sara – I just saved that PDF to my computer, and opened it in Photoshop, where I added some different elements in. So if you have Photoshop, it’s pretty simple! I hope that helps!


  • August 26, 2013 - 10:09 pm

    Sara - Thanks a lot :)ReplyCancel

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Morgan Bubba Michele Shore Photography Texas Engagement01

Morgan Bubba Michele Shore Photography Texas Engagement02

Morgan Bubba Michele Shore Photography Texas Engagement03

Morgan Bubba Michele Shore Photography Texas Engagement04

Morgan Bubba Michele Shore Photography Texas Engagement05

Morgan Bubba Michele Shore Photography Texas Engagement06

Morgan Bubba Michele Shore Photography Texas Engagement07

Morgan Bubba Michele Shore Photography Texas Engagement08

Morgan Bubba Michele Shore Photography Texas Engagement09

Morgan Bubba Michele Shore Photography Texas Engagement10

Morgan & Bubba wanted to do their engagement session where they first met, which was at their friends ranch house in Lucas, Texas. They are planning a wedding for this July in Fairview, Texas, which we can’t wait to see! This couple has great inspiration for a simple farm engagement. They are truly enjoying the scenery and each other’s company.

Photographer:  Michele Shore Photography//
Submitted via Two Bright Lights

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We’re back chatting with fabulous wedding vendors again this month after taking a break in April since it was packed to the brim with real wedding features all month long, which, by the way, we hope you LOVED! So much inspiration to be found!

But now we’re back. And this month we’ll be chatting with photographers and they will be giving lots of great insight into how they make stunning photographs (with your help!) and lots of practical tips that will help you as you look for and work with your wedding photographer. So guess who we’re talking to today?

ME (Emily, ILFW’s editor-in-chief)! Ok, so you probably already know, but when I’m not hanging out with you here at I Love Farm Weddings, I’m a professional photographer with my studio located in Minneapolis, MN. So it’s my treat to be able to share a little bit from the other side of my business over at Emily Walen Photography! I’ve been a professional wedding photographer for 12 years. I nervously photographed my first wedding in 2001, and fell in love with photographing that wedding, and every wedding since. It’s a pretty remarkable thing to be able to share in one of the most incredibly joy-filled days in folks’ lives.

Emily Walen  - MN farm wedding photographer

Emily Walen - MN farm wedding photographer

Though I could, I am not going to sit here and just go on and on about how gorgeous weddings are, we’re going to talk about something less exciting but SUPER important when planning your wedding photography…


Ugh, right? It’s a weird feeling when you are planning a wedding and you start rolling up expenses up into the thousands. For someone very practical like me, it took some getting used to. And your wedding photography is no exception. I know everyone has a different budget. That is perfectly fine.

But more importantly, whether your budget is small or large, HERE ARE FIVE IMPORTANT BUDGET TIPS TO KEEP IN MIND AS YOU PLAN YOUR WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY…

1. Don’t blow your wedding budget on only your “day of” photography coverage. There are other things that cost money that are JUST AS IMPORTANT as having a photographer with you on your wedding day… How about doing something with your photographs after the wedding? Maybe an album, or prints, or wall art, or an iPhone case with your wedding photo, whatever it may be. As a photographer, I can tell you that it TRULY breaks my heart when I hear about couples who have gotten married and still haven’t done anything with their photos. They are just sitting on a disc, or a USB drive, or are files on their computer. Oh, PLEASE DON’T DO THAT! In part, it takes a good photographer to help guide you to create keepsakes. I know looking at 500-1,000+ photographs can be paralyzing to figure out what to do with them, or how to narrow it down when you have so many favorites (so look to your photographer for guidance). But here’s what sadly happens more often, couples simply run out of money in their budget to do anything with them. They had sticker shock on album prices, or large prints for their walls, or figured no big deal for now, and thought, “oh, we’ll just wait until after the wedding and decide then.” Which brings me to my next point.

2. NO ONE wants to spend money after a wedding! Most couples are simply spent-out. Meaning they don’t want to decide another detail, or spend another decent chunk of money. Why, oh why, spend so much money on a wedding photographer not to carefully consider ahead of time what you want to do with those photographs. If you do nothing with them, or casually print out a couple 4x6s, it just doesn’t do your photos justice.

3. MAKE A PLAN AHEAD OF TIME! Think about where in your home you want photos from your wedding, and how big you think you might want them to be. Consider if you want a professionally handcrafted photo album or want to make your own scrapbook. Price out how much that’s all going to cost and factor it in to your budget. It might give you a little less than you planned for your day-of coverage, but at least what you do have photographs of will be properly enjoyed and preserved (and within budget so you don’t have to stress about that).

4. Keep in mind too, that with any photography package you choose, there will likely be expenses to factor in to your budget – taxes, mileage, travel fees maybe. Those can add up when numbers start in the thousands. You don’t want to start your wedding photography experience by going over budget by several hundred dollars when you don’t keep those in mind. It adds up fast, so just be mindful of the fees.

5. My next piece of advice is similar to advice given to brides looking at wedding dresses… Don’t try on a dress more expensive than you can afford. Similarly, don’t meet with photographers out of your price range. There are talented people in all price ranges and you just need to find them! And this is really important if you keep in mind numbers 1-4 above. You don’t want to start higher than you can end up affording when you remind yourself about fees and planning for keepsakes to enjoy after the wedding. Starting your marriage in debt or with lingering stress about how much you went over budget is NO good. Start planning within a range that you will be able to look back on after and feel good about.

Emily Walen  - MN farm wedding photographer

Emily Walen  - MN farm wedding photographer

I will ALWAYS advocate for couples to hire a wedding photographer. Don’t let your wedding day go undocumented. But please, pretty please, make a plan and do something with your photographs after your day has come and gone. Those photographs represent the start of your family. Remember that they will be passed down through generations honoring you and your relationship. Pass them down in a way that can be cherished. A DVD might just not cut it. Your grandkids will probably wonder what that shiny relic is.;)And, stick to your budget. It’s easy enough to do if you make a plan. You can do it!

Cheers to you all as you find and work with your wedding photographer! If you’d like (I’d like it), you can follow more of my work at my website, on Facebook, on Twitter, and on Pinterest (you know you’ll see some farm love there too!).

Emily Walen - MN farm wedding photographer

all images by emily walen

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