Thank you to Kim from Kim Payant Photography for sharing with us this beautiful intimate wedding held in Banff National Park. What a breathtaking backdrop, and those dresses are GORGEOUS!
Read all about their wedding day!
Q: Tell us about your wedding! What was the inspiration behind your day? Did you have a specific theme, style or color palette? Did you incorporate any cultural or religious traditions in any part of your day?
A: Purplish wines. Philomena's favorite colors. Rustic outdoor Mountain: We are both in love with the Canadian Rockies and spend as much time as we can visiting them. Natural and grandeur; it is the feeling all humans experience when they fall in love. We wanted the free and majestic beauty of it captured at our intimate ceremony and reception.
Q: What were the florals like in your wedding? Did you use flowers in any of your design elements like the bridal bouquets, centerpieces or ceremony backdrop? Did they play an important part in the overall style of your wedding?
A: Your top 3 favorite wedding details (cake, flowers, dress, band, etc.) and why: Hair: As everyone knows weddings are very expensive. For some reason the high price of the hairdo was the one thing I was actually very hesitant to pay. But let me say now that I am so glad I did! I never imagined my unconventional hair could look so elegant and classically beautiful. When I looked at it in the mirror after an hour or so of sitting still with an aching neck, I thought, “oh my god, is this really my hair? Is this really me in the mirror?” 100% worth it. Cake: We questioned if anyone would really eat the cake at all after a full buffet and cheesecake provided by cornerstone. Turns out it was delicious and there wasn't anything left of the 100 serving cake after our 70 guests were through with it. (except for the top tier that's still sitting in the freezer for our anniversary) We showed Cake Creations a photo we had found on pinterest and worried if we'd get a “expectation vs. reality” cake. The only difference between the picture and the cake we got was that the real cake was a little nicer looking! Also the cake topper we had the florist make was all but literally the icing on the cake. Matching wedding bands: Unlike the showy engagement rings, we both knew the wedding bands would be the timeless keepsakes that would be worn more often than not. We splurged on the matching set. The flowery bands aren't a typical choice I'm sure for any bride, but for us they are perfect.
Q: Did you personalize the day in any way (food trucks, guest entertainment etc.)? What were some of your favorite parts of your wedding?
A: Your top 3 best moments and why: The drive up to Two Jack Lake in the limo: The night before the wedding both Canmore and banff were enveloped in the thickest wild fire smoke I'd ever seen. My heart sank as the further we drove from Calgary the thicker the smoke got. By the time we arrived in the mountains you wouldn't even know it as you couldn't see them at all from any one place in Canmore. We ate breakfast on the patio on our wedding day, and from there the view hadn't gotten much less smokey. I was at peace with it by now. There was nothing anyone could do and being sad about it would just make it worse. Then what seemed to be a miracle happened on our drive up to Two Jack Lake! As the limo passed Lake Minnewanka I realized that I could see the beautiful view complete with blue sky hidden behind the tightly packed roadside trees. The blue of Two Jack lake is complimented by the green trees covering the mountain opposite of our ceremony in all our wedding photos. Our first dance: This was the one thing leading up to the wedding I was most nervous for. I thought to myself that after this part was done I could finally relax and enjoy my wedding. Turns out it was actually fun! We danced an upbeat swing for half the song before our MC invited everyone to grab there best friend and join us. Thank-you so much to Chris at DC Dance Club for giving us the crash course on dancing and teaching us how fun it really is. I've never received a louder applause than when we ended our dance with the “octopus” move you taught us. When we got to the reception and saw everyone: After the longest day of our lives, and posing for photos for hours on ends, it was such a relief to arrive at Cornerstone theater for our reception. It was the first time we got to see it with our decorations and it was spectacular. The best part, however, was finally greeting all of our guests. We were so happy to see them all there.
Q: How did you meet? Tell us about the proposal.
A: How did you meet?: The modern day love story in the tech age: Online!
Engagement story: On a particularly warm April the 8th I frantically asked around if my job could be covered so I could leave early. My girlfriend and I had a nice hotel booked in Banff and plans for spring snowboarding at Sunshine in the morning. Secretly I had practiced the engagement gift, a song written on guitar with the lyrics asking her to marry me, enough times I was sure my voice wouldn't shake. I had been hiding the engagement ring for months already, and with the erratic weather of Calgary and the neighboring Canadian Rockies I didn't know if my next chance for a nice Friday would be months (or even years) away. This was my chance. It was perfect. I gathered up my nerves and my coworker's “good lucks” as I rushed out of work. I already knew she would say yes, what could go wrong? The passageway into the Rockies from Calgary was windy that day, as usual, but the weather was still warm enough with the sun shining down. We parked in the pull-out on highway #1. The perfect place for viewing Lac De Arc, as well as the best place to launch our raft over to the tiny picnic table inhabited island. I swung my compact guitar over my shoulder. The ring was zipped carefully in the case's front pocket, and my heart was in my throat. It really was perfect. The scenery, the cute picnic I had packed, and Philomena's obliviousness to my master plan. When should I bust out my guitar? After the picnic? After a few selfies? After stalling just a little more? My nerves were shot, but I acted normal (I think). As Philomena lined up a photo on her phone, the both of us smiling with the water glistening behind us, she noticed something. Our raft floating away on the windy waves without it's rafters! Panic! I had half a thought that if I completed a full thought it would be even farther away. I jumped in after it! The day was warm, but that water was cold...and muddy. Turns out Lac De Arc is very shallow. The bottom is all sludge and slower to walk through than a raft travels blown by the wild winds of the Rockies. I swam the 100 or so meters. Perfect hair, makeup, and outfit for the occasion and all. Thank goodness the car keys still worked after their swim. When I returned to the small island with the raft, I tied it down to the flagpole and put the wooden chair on top of it that someone had left for good measure. I tied my guitar case down to the picnic table after that too. Philomena showered me with praise and kisses while laughing at me looking like a muddy drowned rat. I was her hero! “I would marry you if you asked!” she proclaimed. Oh yeah, I still had more to do. The icy dip in the lake seemed like nothing all of a sudden compared to playing the only song I'd ever written in front of my future wife. My voice did shake. I'd like to say it was because of the chill from the wind on my soaked hair, but I don't know who'd believe that. She said yes! Not a surprise, but it felt shocking still. We kissed on the tiny island beside the Canadian flag, and cars honked at us from the highway. It was the proverbial shouting from the mountain tops. Only it was on a lake. Later that night as I washed my not-anymore nicest newest jeans in the hotel tub, Philomena laughed at photos on her cellphone she had captured of me in the lake.
Q: What was the most anticipated or special moment of your wedding day?
A: Our first dance: This was the one thing leading up to the wedding I was most nervous for. I thought to myself that after this part was done I could finally relax and enjoy my wedding. Turns out it was actually fun! We danced an upbeat swing for half the song before our MC invited everyone to grab there best friend and join us. Thank-you so much to Chris at DC Dance Club for giving us the crash course on dancing and teaching us how fun it really is. I've never received a louder applause than when we ended our dance with the “octopus” move you taught us. Wedding song, explain choice for song: You're my best friend by Queen. We chose this song for obvious reasons. It is an upbeat and joyful song that is fun to dance to. The lyrics are “us” too.
Photographer: Kim Payant Photography
Reception Venue: Cornerstone Theatre
Ceremony Location: Two Jack Lake in Banff National Park
Bridal Gown: Davids Bridal Calgary
Bridal Party Attire : Davids Bridal Calgary
Bride 2: Oleg Cassini/Davids Bridal
Cake: Cake Creations
Hair & Makeup: Lilies and Lace
Flowers: Deer Valley Florist
Others: Wedding Bands: Zeghani
Commissioner: Robin White
Happy Wedding Planning!