Our Wedding: Ceremony and Reception Details + Vendor Round-Up

We interrupt the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale posts to continue Wedding Week! I know half of you are probably thinking, "THANK GOD!" at this point, amiright? Today is super exciting, for me at least, because I'm recapping all of our wedding ceremony and reception details and including a complete list of every vendor we used so if you're looking to get married at West Point or you live in the Hudson Valley, make sure to check out our amazing vendors! 

Hudson Valley Wedding Vendor Round-Up

Ceremony & Reception: The Thayer Hotel at West Point
Florals: Scepter Brides Flowers
Bridesmaid Dresses: Adrianna Papell
Hair: Lindsey Cuff Heussey of LJ Bridal Team
Favors: The Holistic Housewife
DJ: Digital Musicians Entertainment
Makeup: Emily Elle Makeup
Dress: The Vow Boutique

Photography: Eliza Jane Photography

The Ceremony

Our wedding ceremony was everything that I dreamed it would be. I feel like I have said that in every wedding-related post since we got married but that's really the goal, isn't it? Other than being freaking hot as heck and in direct sunlight (not sure why they chose 4:30 for our start time?) everything flowed and was exactly what Justin and I wanted, a celebration of love and family. 

Justin and I planned our entire wedding around this idea that one chapter of our lives was closing while another one was beginning. We wanted it to be a huge celebration and that's why there were so many fun touches, like the ribbon wands, and an emphasis on how our story started. West Point brought us together and it was important to both of us that it be highlighted. It's one of the reasons we chose to have our wedding there instead of Alaska or West Virginia! 

The bridal party actually walked down the aisle to the Piano Guys cover of "You Don't Know You're Beautiful" by One Direction. It was a song I picked on a total whim because I was going for that stringed instrument sound on a beer budget but I'm so glad I chose it in hindsight because it set the tone for the ceremony perfectly. I think you could instantly see that we were EXCITED to be getting married. I walked down the aisle to "Can't Help Falling In Love" also by the Piano Guys and instantly teared up as my dad and I were walking when the song started to play. 

My dad was the one who officiated our ceremony which is something I have dreamed of since I was a child. He chose to read Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 and Song of Solomon 8:7 during the ceremony. In between readings, Justin and I did a handfasting ceremony which is an old Pagan tradition that originated somewhere in Scotland a long time ago. I am pretty proud of my Scottish heritage so I knew I wanted to incorporate that somehow. My mom actually DIY'd the handfasting cord that we used and incorporated our family tartan into it as well.

After the handfasting, we did the typical wedding message and read the vows we wrote to each other. We also had a special moment where we prayed with our friends and families. Like all military weddings, we conducted the saber arch as we left the ceremony which is probably one of my favorite moments of the day. After that, it was time to get the party started! 

The Reception

We started with a cocktail hour that included a freaking mashed potato bar and it was everything I dreamed it would be and more. I'm still getting compliments about how good the mashed potato bar was! The menu for our guests included our custom wedding crest by Lily and Hue and we displayed her watercolor painting of West Point on our escort table. 100% the best custom items we had made for the wedding. They are still one of my favorite wedding details (if you couldn't tell by the fact that I put the crest on literally everything). 

Justin and I danced to "King and Lionheart" by Of Monsters and Men. I loved the song because it's not your typical wedding song and we both just kind of looked at each other one day and realized that was going to be our song. 

Also, let's take a minute to talk about the adorable little custom made candles my dear friend Amanda of The Holistic Housewife made for our wedding favors. She absolutely blew me away with these adorable mini candles and they made the perfect wedding favor! Definitely check her out if you're looking for a wedding favor. She did the candle favors as well as lip balms we included in our welcome bags! 

PS: Did you think I was going to have a wedding without throwing in one Harry Potter detail in there?