This wedding goes back to a hot day this summer in a small Iowa town with Mindi and Braden. The couple and their family are some of the sweetest people I’ve had the pleasure to work with. We started the day with the guys getting ready at Mindi and Braden’s adorable home. The guys were half naked and ornery passing around a bottle of whiskey. Nonetheless, welcoming us with a joyful demeanor. After that, we headed out to Mindi’s family homestead off beautiful country roads. Everyone was gorgeous and ready to go helping Mindi make final jewelry decisions and gathering around to get her in the dress.
Mindi and Braden did a first look on top of a hill overlooking a perfect Iowa summer scene. They embraced with happiness, and the family and wedding party joined the group for the next set of images.
The ceremony was at a quaint little church in the middle of the small town of Mediapolis, Iowa. It was easy to see how much Mindi and Braden were loved as the church burst with guests.
We stopped at a local area to get a few fun shots in town with the wedding party then headed to the party. The reception was held at Pzazz in Burlington, Iowa and was filled with all of Mindi’s hard work and visions transforming the room into a fantastic site full of loving energy.
The party went on with laughs, toasts, dancing, and tears of joy.
I couldn’t ask for a better way to share my time with beautiful people. Thank You for letting me come along on your day and capture all of these precious memories!
Here are some words from Mindi and Braden about their wedding day:
- Did you have inspiration for your wedding? I look back and see what our first ideas and thoughts were and can’t believe how much our vision evolved into what it was! I knew I wanted lots of greenery and that was the start of planning! We also knew we wanted to honor my late Grandma Fern with the ferns and that tied beautifully with the rest of the greenery we wanted to do! I wanted the vibe to be a very fresh & elegant feel to the reception. I knew I wanted lots of candles and we put lots of white/ivory everywhere from table and chair covers, to fresh flowers, with hints of pale pink here and there. Then we added lots of greens to make it fresh. We found beautiful fresh garlands that were enormous, and when we saw the first one, we fell in love, and that really finalized the course of what we were going to do! We made wreaths from them and used them as garlands and made photo booth backdrop. Pinterest is a wonderful place to get inspiration and ideas but can also confuse you more than anything. I would say try to know your style and what you picture your wedding to look like and then begin your search. I found a lot of ideas along the way that just continued to add to our original ideas!
- What were the colors of your wedding? Our colors were Mauve for the bridesmaids & Navy for the groomsmen. We decorated with all white/ivory & greenery with a hint of very pale pink in the flowers.
- Did you have any special details that were unique to your wedding? We had decided from the day we started planning we wanted to incorporate ferns into our decorations in memory of my Grandma Fern. I was very close with her and thought that would be a beautiful thing to do in her honor. As time went on things fell into place we ended up with beautiful two-year ferns that were huge. They soon became our focal point of the room, and everything was built from there! Braden’s Mom and Uncle fabricated the stands the ferns sat on. We just loved them. Also, Braden’s late Grandpa Joe built the big black pillars that the lights hung on around the bar area. We were happy to be able to use those knowing he created them. All of these details may not have been apparent by everyone but were definitely unique and irreplaceable to us.
- What was your favorite wedding detail of the day? The dress for me was my favorite. I have so many other aspects that I loved, but I loved to wear the dress all day. Picking out that dress many months before was so fun and then you have to wait all that time to put it back on for the big day! I couldn’t wait for Braden to see me in it. I loved the long train and couldn’t wait to walk down the aisle in it but also loved that it was removable after the wedding. For the reception, I got a belt that I loved with a champagne bow, and it felt like I was in an entirely different dress!
- What were the bride and groom’s favorites moments? We both talked about it after the day was over and our favorite moment of the day was the same for both of us. Definitely our first look. Braden knew we were going to see each other for pictures before the ceremony, but he didn’t know that I had it set up that way with the “first look.” He thought that was really cool loved that our first moments together were private. I loved being able to finally take a deep breath and see the look on his face when we first saw each other! I knew it would be emotional and it kind of calmed our nerves after we got to see each other!
- What advice would you give to brides still planning their wedding? I know it sounds cliché but don’t sweat the small stuff and enjoy everything leading up to that day! It will come and go so quickly if you don’t stop and enjoy it! I was lucky to have so many people surrounding me to make it so memorable and also to make sure all of the final details got done. When it comes down to it, no one but you and a handful of friends and family will know if something didn’t end up the way you planned. Remember what is important. At the end of the day, you are still married to the one you love, and you are surrounded by all the people you love. No one will remember if their table is set up different than the next one, or if the flowers aren’t in the right place, they will remember the memories that were made that night!
- Would you have done anything differently when planning your wedding? I loved how everything turned out! I wouldn’t want to change a thing with that! One thing I wish I would have prepared a little better was finding a home for all the flowers at the end of the night. We had many floral arrangements and fresh garlands and wreaths along with big beautiful ferns. Our family, of course, took home a lot of that stuff but if I could change one thing, it would be that I would have had a plan for where all that stuff was going so it could have been enjoyed by many people for many more days. It was, of course, a thought beforehand but when the week got here, there were so many other things to focus on it just got pushed to the back of my mind.
- Are you planning on taking a Honeymoon? We did take a honeymoon to Oahu, Hawaii. We flew out the Tuesday morning after the wedding! I would recommend to all those brides and grooms who plan to take a honeymoon right away to give yourself until Monday night or Tuesday morning before you plan to leave. We needed and wanted the time with family on Sunday to tear everything down, open gifts, and talk about all of the fun from the night before. If we had planned on leaving Monday, we would have had to have been packing on Sunday instead of spending that day with family. We would have been rushed and not felt ready! Having that extra day to prepare to leave was wonderful! We had the time of our lives in Oahu! We spent a few days at Waikiki Beach which was beautiful but busy! Then we headed to the North Shore for the last 5 days. We drove to the east coast of the island to get there, and the scenery was breathtaking, and it was so relaxing. Something about being by the ocean is so calming. If we were to do it over again, we probably would have spent our whole trip on the north shore. It was very laid back there. We would make the trip back there in a heartbeat!
Getting ready Location:
Boys: Mindi & Braden’s House Girls: Cara’s House (sister of the bride)
First United Methodist Church of Mediapolis, IA
Pzazz Convention & Event Center
Off-site portrait Location:
Jon & Cindy Fye’s yard (Parents of the Bride)
A friend of the Family
Bride: Beckers Jewelers Groom: Riddle’s Jewelry
Sarah’s Bridal Gallery – Mt. Pleasant, IA
Melissa’s – West Burlington
Humphrey’s Sound – Paul Humphrey Winfield, IA
Pzazz Convention & Event Center
Ruby’s Cake Co. – Chari Ruby – Mt. Pleasant, IA
Becker’s Jewelry – Earrings, Bracelet, & Necklace
Danielle Miller at The Grand Strand Salon did the Bride & some bridesmaids & Sadie Mercer did some bridesmaids
Maddie Hollingsworth – Did Bride and some bridesmaids and mother of the bride – Jordan Dziulko – some bridesmaids & Mother of the Groom
Pastor Bruce Smith
Full Out Promotions
Event Coordinator- Teresa Jamison – Pzazz Convention & Events Center
For more photographs by Brandy Swartz, visit www.brandyswartz.com
Contact today for wedding information to book your 2019 wedding.