Fall is our absolute favourite time of the year. As teachers with kids, it’s almost like it’s our own new year. New clothes, a new plan of attack at work.
And, let’s not forget, it’s the prelude to the amazing food and holiday celebrations that come with the harvest season.
The air is fresh and clean. The colours are amazing. The clothing options are far less limited. Everything just seems so crisp and vibrant and full of abundance.
This is why we chose to hold our wedding in the fall. It was a couple of years ago now, but we still remember it like it was yesterday. One of our life goals is to always celebrate the fall season with that same feeling of love and abundance we had when all our friends and family came to our new backyard to celebrate with us.
OK, disclaimer…we weren’t married in the fall. We were actually married in July. But — and this is the important part — Amanda is a teacher, which means her holidays are in the summer. To get our fantastic two-week Italian honeymoon in, we decided to hold our (very small) wedding ceremony in July right before departure, then hold a nice big party for our loved ones at the end of September. This way everyone could get back from their summer holidays, the weather would be less stifling, and our backyard and deck would be finished and ready to party!
We got started on the decorations early, as the home centres were starting to unload their corn stalks and hay bales. it made sense to grab a few while we could get a good price. Steve then had the idea to surprise Amanda using some old pallet wood and a 2×2 spindle from our old deck railing to create this little sign:
The text and hearts are just stencils Steve picked up at Michael’s, along with some red spray paint.
We’re bonkers for Christmas. But some Scrooge told us once that September is too early to start putting up the trees (yes, we have more than one), so we start the holiday sequence off as early as we can in September by decorating for the fall. It really only takes a few pics of leaves and some pumpkins (which we got at the dollar store!) to start freshening up for the season:
Those are Amanda’s parents in that photo. The bouquet just to the right of it was Amanda’s wedding bouquet, which she also crafted by hand. This is a hutch in our dining room.
We do like to make sure people feel welcome in our home. The pine cones and grasses on the ledge by our door, as well as the fruit on the piano and shoe rack are also from the dollar store. This little scene is from the day of our reception, and includes the guestbook and a little chalkboard sign:
We made sure to set the scene outside the day of the party. Our yard backs onto green space, and the squirrels will take any fruit or vegetable they can get their hands on in the fall. The mini gourds on the hay bale are from the grocery store down the street (we have video from the week after the reception of squirrels stealing those AND the corn from those stalks — at least someone ate the leftovers!!).
We were able to get that beautiful garland on the table from Michael’s on clearance, which was a fantastic bargain. The burlap adds a nice farm-style touch to both the table and the corner of the deck. The handwriting on the chalkboard sign was courtesy of our niece, and the leaves under the burlap and the garland in the far corner are both from the dollar store as well.
Of course you noticed the wicker basket on the table. Those were our wedding favours we sent home with our guests. Instead of candies or trinkets, we packaged up s’mores! We had just installed our fireplace table in on the deck as well, so later in the evening the kids got to go wild with whatever ‘smores were left.
Each favour had a large marshmallow and a hunk of Hershey’s chocolate sandwiched between two graham crackers. Then we packed them into cellophane treat baggies, tied them with a cord of twine and a bow made from plaid ribbon, and added vintage (handwritten) tag — all from Michael’s. We had to add the “Thank You” stickers as well. Each tag has the initials S&A with our actual wedding date (not the date of the party), and a punny little saying reflecting our quirky sense of humour:
- That’s s’more, eh?
- S’more love
- You melt me.
- Our love will never wafer.
Here’s a closeup:
Of course, what’s a wedding without a cake? We don’t go in for those gigantic, reality show type cakes though. We’re more the type who just want people to enjoy themselves, celebrate with a beautiful design, and eat the darn thing. Luckily, Amanda’s mom knows a great cake decorator who is a wizard with floral piping. She made us this simple, but incredibly elegant (and delicious!) cake that was a delight to share with the people we love:
All-in-all, it was a fantastic day with a lot of great food, great friends, and all we could ask of the abundance of the season. Even the weather cooperated, and we had the most glorious day imaginable. There was even a pair of cardinals singing at the feeder!
If you’ve found inspiration for your upcoming fall parties, be they for a wedding, a birthday, or even for Thanksgiving, we hope you’ll give some of these ideas a try!