Certaines rencontres bouleversent une vie. Quand Lauren est partie des Etats-Unis pour apprendre à faire du fromage de chèvre dans une ferme alsacienne, elle était loin d’imaginer qu’elle rencontrerait l’homme de sa vie. Cinq petites semaines auront suffit pour que ces deux-là tombent follement amoureux l’un de l’autre. Deux ans plus tard, nous les retrouvons en Alsace pour un mariage champêtre où chaque détail a été réalisé avec amour. Un mariage un peu magique où le conte de fées prend vie.
Avec les belles images d’Elodie Winter, Lauren nous en dit plus…
« November 2013, Gaspard’s farm. I had just spent the past nine months traveling Europe on a career hiatus and had this romantic idea of learning how to make cheese in France before returning to the United States. I never could have imagined I would find a husband in the process !
Gaspard and his team make the most wonderful goat cheese. I spent five weeks learning from them and caring for the animals, but also falling head over heels in love. Saying goodbye at the end of my stay at the farm was difficult, to say the least, but at that point I was convinced I could never pick up my life and move to France permanently. However, a couple of months later, just before starting a new job in Chicago, I returned to France and Gaspard and I went on a 10-day road trip, spending every minute together. It was then that he convinced me that not only was this possible — it was exactly what we both wanted. We started making plans for my move later that year.
La demande en mariage
Over the course of the year after we first met, we made several crossings over the Atlantic in between our daily talks on Skype. During one visit, we traveled to Dublin for a friend’s wedding. The day was magical, and at the reception we were tucked in a corner watching all of the happy people around us, when Gaspard just looked at me and said — I really want to marry you. And I turned to him and said the same. I moved to France in November 2014, and we began planning the wedding for the end of the following summer.
It was important to us to be outdoors and play off the beauty and magic of Alsace. We held the ceremony in the Cour de l’Arsenal — a historical courtyard filled with summer flowers — in the picturesque village of Kaysersberg, then paraded everyone up into the mountains for the reception, where we danced the night away under the stars at a rural farmhouse owned by Gaspard’s aunt and uncle. Brunch was held there the next morning, and both the reception house and a nearby rental house provided overnight accommodations for many guests. Having the reception in an place that was off the beaten path (literally!) made for some logistical challenges, but we got creative with solutions and our guests were good sports. We were so happy with how it worked out in the end.
Because attending the wedding was going to be a significant journey for my family and many friends, we wanted to spend as much quality time with them as possible. So, we planned for a week of celebrations! We hiked in the Vosges mountains, gave a tour of Gaspard’s farm, and toasted our impending nuptials the night before the wedding at the castle above Kaysersberg.
Our wedding was very DIY, and we spent the months before it tackling projects and getting organized to make sure the day was as stress-free as possible. Together, my mom and I designed my dress while I was back in the U.S. for a visit the previous winter, and she brought it to life in the months after. My family played a big roll in making the wedding week go smoothly — finishing last-minute projects, running errands and making sure everyone stayed in high spirits. It was a lot of work, and we couldn’t have done it without them.
Vendredi, 28 août 2015. Having the wedding on a Friday made sense for us because some of our VIP guests had to travel that weekend.
Le budget du mariage
11,000€ (excluding dress, engagement ring, and honeymoon)
Votre meilleur souvenir
Our first dance. We love dancing and chose a fun, upbeat song with special meaning to us, Caro Emerald’s That Man. Everyone thought we had choreographed it (we didn’t — we had no time to!), and as we spun around, the rest of the world melted away and it felt like it was just the two of us.
Et si c’était à refaire ?
It was a beautiful day, and we were so lucky in so many ways. My only regret is that my older sister couldn’t be there as she had just had her first baby. However, I know she was with me in spirit, and she sent a letter to me that my younger sister read at the reception. Quelle émotion !
Do & Don’t
Do what feels right for you and prioritize what you want — not necessarily what’s traditional for weddings. For us, that meant skipping the sit-down dinner and having an indulgent apéro to encourage everyone to mix and mingle. Tarte flambée, soupe à l’oignon and homemade chocolate chip cookies followed throughout the night.
If you’re on a budget, do get creative and find beauty in simple things. Don’t go into debt for your wedding!
Les adresses du mariage
Faire-part et papeterie : Nous-mêmes (via Paperless Post)
Lieu : Ceremonie – Cour de l’Arsenal, Kaysersberg ; réception – ferme d’un parent de marié
Traiteur : La Pays’Anne (Hoenheim)
Fleurs : Père de la mariée
Tenue de la mariée : Robe – confectionnée par la mère de la mariée // sandales – Dune London
Tenue de marié : Veste – Burton of London // chaussures – Clarks // pantalon – ODB
Coiffure & make up : Mariée // couronne de fleurs – Mint and Melon Boutique
DJ : Marié
Orchestre : Guadal
Photographe : Elodie Winter