Alice In Wonderland Inspired Baby Shower

The Barn is known for its stunning, over-the-top, all-inclusive weddings and elopements, but did y'all know we do all kinds of other events, too? We've hosted holiday parties (Christmas, Halloween, New Years Eve, etc.), birthday parties, Banquet at The Barn, and several other great events. A couple years ago, we were asked by one of our former brides (y'all probably remember Ashley from this elegant, gorgeous wedding!) to host the absolute sweetest baby shower ever. I’ve shared this post before, but I wanted to share it again to remind y'all of the wonderful, non-wedding events that our team does! Whitney Phillips from WDPhotography photographed the event, and her pictures are so lovely! 

Ashley hosted the shower for her younger sister, Melissa, and sweet baby Charlotte Marie. Ashley has impeccable style and creative ideas, and she and our team were able to create a beautiful, elegant shower with the most beautiful details! Ashley's inspiration for the theme started with a photo Melissa showed her of umbrellas hanging over a set table. "As always, I shared the image with Lesleigh and her wheels started turning," Ashley said. "I'm not a big fan of traditional baby showers. Plastic tablecloths and a sign that says baby girl or boy on it with giraffes or sail boats. I wanted to stay as far away from the 'typical' as possible." We don't do anything "typical" at The Barn, so of course we stayed far away from traditional, boring baby shower decor. ;)

Melissa also loves Alice in Wonderland, so Ashley wanted vintage-inspired details from the story incorporated into the decor. She called it more of an Alice in Wonderland "feeling" than a theme... It wasn't over-the-top, but there were enough Alice details throughout to tie it all together! There were tea cups filled with pink and white florals, feminine ruffled tablecloths and sequined chevron runners, pink and gold place settings, and vintage-inspired umbrellas over the tables, with strings of pearls "raining" down. 

TheCakePlace made the most gorgeous, detailed vintage Alice in Wonderland-inspired cake, as well as "eat me" and "drink me" cookies. Adorable! The gold watch and teacup on the cake are killing me!

The shower took place mid-afternoon, so instead of providing a full meal, there were finger foods and a really fun cravings station!  "The craving table was inspired by my sister's pregnancy cravings, which included glazed donuts, Carmelos and Hershey's cookies and cream candy bars!" 

All good baby showers involve games, but we all know how cheesy and not fun they can be. Ashley chose fun, tasteful games and activities, including a "What's in your purse?" game and another game in which guests tried to name the Disney movie that goes to the Disney song. Fun and not at all tacky! :)

We were honored to plan this baby shower for Melissa and baby Charlotte, and I loved Ashley's reason for asking The Barn to help her out with this event! "I have six children, two of which are 1 year old twin girls, so I have zero time to plan large events!" Ashley said. "Being able to call Lesleigh and plan a beautiful event over the phone and through emails is absolutely amazing! I loved everything about the shower and wouldn't have changed anything!" 

Wedding Inspiration: Stunning Veils

I can't get Meghan Markle's veil off my mind after this weekend, so let's talk about veils today! (Sorry (not sorry) to be that person who can't shut up about the royal wedding. I'm still swooning over every perfect detail... the amazing florals, her simple dress, and literally everything. Perfection.)

You can totally go without a veil on your wedding day, but if you choose to wear one, deciding on the perfect veil can be difficult. There are so many styles and lengths to choose from, as well as many price points. (FYI: A showstopping, detailed, long veil is typically pretty darn expensive. Like, it could be almost as much as your dress!) You've got to make sure it compliments your dress. And you've got to figure out what hairstyle will look best with it. But a great veil can totally make your wedding day look! I find myself swooning over a good veil just as much as bridal gowns. I'm pretty sure you could have the most plain, boring, blah bridal gown and pair it with a jaw-dropping veil, and you'd still look amazing. 

Like the idea of a veil but not sure you want to fully commit? Wear it for your bridals, but not on your wedding day. Or wear it during your ceremony, but not to the reception. I'll quit rambling now and show you some swoon-worthy veils, from gorgeous Barn Brides... We have the prettiest brides around!

  Stephanie Parsley Photography , from our  Legado: Wedding Collective  styled shoot at  The Barn . Oh helloooo, most gorgeous veil ever. (And don't even get me started on that gown!)

Stephanie Parsley Photography, from our Legado: Wedding Collective styled shoot at The Barn. Oh helloooo, most gorgeous veil ever. (And don't even get me started on that gown!)

  B.Matthews Photo , from  Tara + Casey 's wedding
  Stephanie Parsley Photography , from  Mackenzie + Tyler 's wedding. The realllyyyy long veils are the ones that really get me. LOVE this one.

Stephanie Parsley Photography, from Mackenzie + Tyler's wedding. The realllyyyy long veils are the ones that really get me. LOVE this one.

  Tryston Hines Photography , from  Monica + Ryan 's wedding. Monica's veil had the perfect amount of bling, but it was simple enough to not take anything away from her amazing dress.

Tryston Hines Photography, from Monica + Ryan's wedding. Monica's veil had the perfect amount of bling, but it was simple enough to not take anything away from her amazing dress.

  Stephanie Parsley Photography , from  Samantha + Danny 's wedding. Flower crown + veil? Definitely YES!

Stephanie Parsley Photography, from Samantha + Danny's wedding. Flower crown + veil? Definitely YES!

  Meredith Melody Photography , from  Ashley + Ivan 's wedding. Wedding veils were MADE for photos like this! This one is just too good.

Meredith Melody Photography, from Ashley + Ivan's wedding. Wedding veils were MADE for photos like this! This one is just too good.

  Lela & Lyla , from  Kassie + Adam 's wedding. When you're wearing the most gorgeous gown on the planet, a simple, classic veil is all you need. 

Lela & Lyla, from Kassie + Adam's wedding. When you're wearing the most gorgeous gown on the planet, a simple, classic veil is all you need. 

  Danielle Davis Art/Photography , from  Emily + Blake 's wedding. Wearing a veil guarantees that your first look photos will be romantic and dreamy!

Danielle Davis Art/Photography, from Emily + Blake's wedding. Wearing a veil guarantees that your first look photos will be romantic and dreamy!

  Lady With A Camera , from  Hannah + Dallas ' wedding. A birdcage veil is perhaps the most difficult style to pull off, but Hannah ROCKED it. 

Lady With A Camera, from Hannah + Dallas' wedding. A birdcage veil is perhaps the most difficult style to pull off, but Hannah ROCKED it. 

  Cottonwood Studios Worldwide , from  Ally + Tyler 's wedding. The longer the veil, the more likely I am to be totally IN LOVE with it. Heart eyes!

Cottonwood Studios Worldwide, from Ally + Tyler's wedding. The longer the veil, the more likely I am to be totally IN LOVE with it. Heart eyes!

Must-Have Wedding Photos

Aside from a great venue, the most important splurge for your wedding day is a great photographer. Hiring a professional photographer is an absolute necessity, because once your wedding day has come and gone, all you have left are photos and a few keepsakes! It's extremely important to have quality photos, and plenty of them. You want to have tons of photos that are beautiful, meaningful, and capture the most special moments and details from your wedding day.

So, what photos can you not do without? This list will fill you in on photos that you simply must have (as well as a few examples from weddings at The Barn!). You might want to print off this list to give to your photographer, just in case. But if your photographer is one of our fabulous preferred vendors, you can be confident that they already know which photos are absolute necessities!

1.     The dress, without you in it

2.     Bridal details: veil, garter, jewelry and any other accessories

3.     Bridal shoes

4.     Rings

5.     Bride getting ready – these are always great candid shots!

6.     Groom getting ready

7.     Invitation suite

8.     First look with parents or bridal party

9.     First look with your bride or groom, if you choose to have one (and you want a whoooole bunch from this moment)

10.   Individual portraits of the bride

11.   Individual portraits of the groom

12.   Approximately a million (maybe I'm exaggerating) romantic photos of you and your beloved in several different locations around your venue, with plenty of gorgeous poses... you want a good variety!

13.   The bride with her bridesmaids

14.   The groom with his groomsmen

15.   The entire bridal party

16.   The bride and groom with the flower girl and ring bearer

17.   Bridal bouquet

18.   Bridesmaids’ bouquets

19.   Groom’s boutonniere

20.   Boutonnieres and corsages

21.   Your ceremony area

22.   Altar

23.   Guestbook table

24.   Aisle

25.   Any other ceremony details. You want tons of detail shots. Make sure your photographer captures as many details as possible, because there’s a good chance that you won’t see a lot of them!

26.   Your reception area

27.   Reception tables

28.   Reception details. As with your ceremony details, you want tons of photos of your reception details, too.

29.   Favors

30.   Any cute signage

31.   The groom at the altar

32.   The bride walking down the aisle

33.   Exchanging of rings and vows

34.   Unity ceremony and/or any unique traditions

35.   Your guests at the ceremony

36.   The kiss! (Duh)

37.   Bride and groom walking back down the aisle

38.   Portraits of the bride and groom immediately following the ceremony

39.   Signing the marriage license

40.   The bride and groom with their families

41.   Food and signature cocktails

42.   The cake

43.   Bride and groom’s first dance

44.   Father-daughter dance

45.   Mother-son dance

46.   Cake cutting

47.   Bouquet toss

48.   Garter toss

49.   Candid photos of everyone having a good time at your reception

50.   Grand exit

Nikki + Mac's Vintage-Country Elopement

Our staff at The Barn tends to joke that all of our brides are either related or they were friends in college... Today's bride just so happens to be Stacy's cousin (we just featured her wedding last week!), and she's also from the same town out in western Oklahoma as Morgan + Wager, which is where she heard about our little ol' barn here in Arkansas. The best advertising is by word of mouth, and we are always so thankful when our brides send their old friends/cousins/sorority sisters our way! But get this - Nikki and Stacy were both planning to get married at The Barn without realizing the other was planning their wedding here, too! Anyway, Nikki and Mac eloped at The Barn last month, and it was a vintage-country-rustic-woodsy dream wedding! 

Their photographs by Callie Kirtley Photography are full of beautiful colors and details, and we're crazy about them! 

***

Nikki and Mac were married at The Barn at Twin Oaks Ranch on April 14, 2018. They chose a spring-inspired color palette of pinks, mint, white and a touch of orange. "Mac and I have different themes of what we were wanting, but they were close enough to combine them," Nikki said. "He liked country and woodsy and I liked vintage and rustic. So it came out perfect for our styles."

We were crazy about Nikki's amazing mermaid bridal gown, which was from David's Bridal. I absolutely love the beautiful ruching (literally the most flattering dress ever), the gorgeous train, and the floral belt, which tied so beautifully at the back. Nikki, you are a dream! 

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Nikki's bouquets were the perfect spring florals - full of gorgeous, bright spring colors. "My bouquet was exactly what I had asked for, full and colorful," she said. "I loved all the different colors and the different greeneries that were used."

There were bits of honeysuckle used throughout their florals and decor, which was one of Nikki's favorite details. "Because of that we are now planting honeysuckle in our flower beds as a little reminder of our special day," she said. This will be the sweetest reminder of their wedding day! 

Nikki and Mac chose to have a first look before their ceremony, to get all their butterflies out and to spend a few sweet moments alone beforehand. Nikki said the first look was one memory they would never forget! "Mac was pretty nervous about everything so we chose to do a first look to ease both of our minds," she said. "Those few minutes where we had both seen each other all dressed up and ready to go were very memorable for the both of us."

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Nikki and Mac's ceremony was a little bit rustic, a little bit vintage, and so romantic. Their altar was made up of whitewashed pallets, which were draped with flowy white fabric, honeysuckle and colorful florals. The flowers gave it the perfect pop of color, and the ferns, greenery and potted flowers made it perfect for spring. 

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Our favorite part about getting married at The Barn would be the no stress associated with coming to The Barn. I had been eyeing The Barn since Morgan and Wager Winters from our hometown posted their elopement, so seeing all the different weddings between a two-year span, I knew I could just hand over our ideas and it would be beautiful and unique.
— Nikki

^ That dress! Swooooon!

Our elopement receptions include a super detailed cake table with the cutest cake ever (these cakes are seriously always the cutest!), as well as any add-ons you might need. Nikki and Mac kept it simple and sweet with a cake and drinks to toast with. This hanging pallet cake display was everything! The honeysuckle coming out of the pallet, the adorable white cake with colorful florals, the vintage lace, and even the cute pink straws in their cups. Every detail was sugary sweet! 

It's no secret that I'm a sucker for wedding day portraits of our couples. These are precious, and they show off the gorgeousness that is spring at The Barn! Y'all are pretty, Nikki and Mac. These are amazing! 

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Our elopement exceeded our expectations. Lesleigh and her team took our theme and Pinterest ideas and ran with them. Absolutely the most beautiful elopement we could have ever dreamed of.
— Nikki
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Nikki and Mac went on a Southern road trip for their honeymoon! "We drove to West Monroe, Louisiana the first night then on to Orange Beach, Alabama where we stayed on the beach for two days," Nikki said. "From there we moved up to Nashville, Tennessee for one night to see the Grand Ole Opry and walk downtown Broadway then traveled to Memphis, Tennessee to stay at Big Cypress Lodge for one night as well, which turned out to be our favorite spot on the whole trip."

Nikki and Mac, thank you so much for coming all the way to The Barn to tie the knot! Your wedding was so, sooo sweet, and we're forever thankful we got to plan it with you. We wish y'all the best... come see us soon! xoxoxoxoxoxo

Over The Top Altars

Wedding altars are serious business. Since the altar is one of the most important details of your wedding day, we put a lot of thought and effort into making them beautiful, show-stopping eye candy. After all, you're pledging your life to someone in front of it and the whole thing will be highly photographed, so it's got to look gorgeous! We adore dreamy, airy altars, but nothing makes us happier than a couple who asks for a completely over-the-top, highly detailed, fabulous altar! Here are some altars from some of our more recent weddings at The Barn, as well as some oldies, that are a little bit crazy and totally awesome!

  Callie Kirtley Photography , from Nikki + Mac's wedding

Callie Kirtley Photography, from Nikki + Mac's wedding

  The Barn's Instagram . This altar was from one of our elopements a few years ago, and it was maybe our most romantic altar ever! 

The Barn's Instagram. This altar was from one of our elopements a few years ago, and it was maybe our most romantic altar ever!