The Wedding and More…

Sharing my oldest daughter’s wedding with inspiration and ideas for a rustic barn wedding.


I have been in “wedding mode” that included pre and post wedding events. I decided to go off the grid and enjoy the time off from the blog and all things internet. I have never done that before and figured after 9 years of blogging, going on a little break would be OK.

It turns out it was a good thing, as the events and our travels the past two weeks have given me lots of inspiration.

Most bloggers share family photos on Facebook, but since Facebook only shows about a dozen of my followers my posts, I decided to share them in a post right here on my blog. Get ready for photo overload.

It is the perfect way for me to get back into blogging mode.

Barn Wedding at Hermitage Hill Farm and Stables in Waynesboro, Va

My oldest daughter got married on June 16th. It was a wedding that I helped organize from afar down to reserving hotel blocks and buses to and from the venue. Ordering flowers, making decor, and more. I will share a few of the DIY’s I did with you over the next few weeks. I relied heavily on Pinterest for ideas that I could make at home and transport 6 hours away.


A week before the wedding, we had 6 of her friends and my son-in-laws parents came down to the lake house for a little pre-wedding fun.

Lake house fun

The weather was perfect and there was lots of action on the water…

…and right off the dock all week.


…obstacle courses and more. It was action packed.

lake house

On Thursday before the wedding we packed up 4 cars with tons of wedding stuff and drove to the wedding destination. We ran around all day Friday getting last minute stuff and then headed to the rehearsal dinner on Friday night.  I was pretty exhausted at this point, but still had to set up for the wedding.

On Saturday morning, the day of the wedding, we headed to the venue to get everything setup before the first bus load of guests arrived. It was the perfect setting for my daughter who loves horses and has been riding since she was in second grade.

It was a beautiful place. Since the sun was shining, we had the ceremony outside. If it rained, the ceremony would have been…

…held inside the stable area…

… here. The chairs outside are placed in here with a middle aisle. Since it was outside, guests had the freedom to explore all over the farm and stables.

DIY Barn wedding

The reception area is where I had to put my past experience as a retail visual merchandiser and DIY skills to use. We had to set everything up. We paid for the use of the farm for the day that included the table and chairs, everything else had to be brought in or rented. Caterers, bar tenders, tablecloths… everything even down to 35 big bags of ice for the bars.

We kept the decorations simple using colorful bandanas for napkins that we bought on Amazon to add color to the space.

Baby’s Breath in Mason jars as the centerpieces.

Out by the entrance and bar area, I set up a table for…

…seating cards, photos and favors.

This part of the venue is where the guests first came and the cocktail hour started. I set up a Popcorn Bar so the guests could munch while they drank and waited for all the guests coming on two charter buses to arrive.

After about 45 minutes everyone went outside for the ceremony with drinks in hand.  It was a very casual and fun affair and told everyone to dress comfy. Shorts were fine and many wore them.

I wore a sleeveless Gingham Pleated-Neck Shift Dress.   My daughter’s dress was my younger sister’s wedding dress. It was perfect and helped keep wedding expenses on budget.

My twin sister wore the same dress as me. One fun part of being an identical twin. We got everyone confused as to who was who. :-) I am on the left.

One of my favorite photos. Kelly’s two loves… horses and Roger. :-)

The farm had many great places for photo ops.

Walkways, paths, and an outdoor fireplace and patio where we got to watch the sunset.

Men's casual wedding attire ideas

We set up games out on the lawn. I wasn’t sure anyone would play, but…

…they did until it got too dark to see.

I mentioned in a post a few weeks ago that I was making a tiered stand for the wedding donuts. I made it so it can be taken apart. It was the only way to transport it.

They were delish and enjoyed by all.

Barn Wedding

There was only one bridesmaid, my younger daughter, Mandy and the best man was a friend of my son-in-law.

Planning a wedding took a lot of time and effort, but in the end…was worth every minute. The day was everything they wanted… a party that was wedding themed, nothing fancy or traditional. As one of my friends said, she did it just like you… in her own style.  :-)

Wedding Video:

YouTube video

Thanks to Beth M. for making this video.

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  1. Lisa Marie says:

    What a lovely informal wedding! It’s so nice to see a couple do this instead of the overblown, budget busting weddings that couples have today. Everything was just beautiful and the guests look like they were having a blast! Congrats to the happy couple.!!!

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Lisa Marie – It was a beautiful wedding. The weather perfect and everything went as planned. My daughter wanted it to be informal which every guest enjoyed, especially the part that they could wear whatever they wanted. :-)

  2. nice pics.. and congrats.. thanks for sharing those memorable moments with us

  3. My granddaughter is getting married later this month. I love the popcorn bar idea.
    In the lake pictures, I noticed that you have a paddle board that has peddles. I have been thinking of getting one and was wondering how you like yours. It looks like fun as well as a good workout. I have tried to find me a used one as they are a little pricey.

  4. Julia@Cuckoo4Design says:

    What a lovely wedding and couple. Such beautiful photos! I adore that you and your sister decided to wear the same dresses. I did recognize you ;)

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Julia – Thanks – I am still trying to get back into my normal daily mode after so much wedding planning and events. My sister and I still like to have fun and do the twin thing. We figure, Why not? since it is a big part of what makes us unique in the world.

  5. Jaye Brown says:

    We had a great weekend in Charlottesville and at Kelly’s wedding. It was a great wedding themed party. We always enjoy being with you guys and hanging with the family and old friends. The video is great and puts a smile on my face. Looking forward to a visit at the lake. Keep on blogging… have always loved your creativity and style. Jaye & Dave

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Jaye – It was great seeing and you and Dave. So glad you got in early and we could spend a few days together. Looking forward to when you can visit the lake. XO

  6. Diane Henkler, I so enjoyed the photos of this beautiful wedding Congratulations!

  7. Kari Rogers-Miller says:

    Beautiful Diane and what a wonderful casual wedding. I know it was a lot of work but you made it look easy.
    I love all the details and I know the beautiful bride and her handsome hubby were more than happy with the way it turned out. Of course I am partial to horses and stables as we raised (and showed) Western Pleasure horses for years and years.
    Are you going to Haven next week?

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Kari – Yes I am going to Haven. I am one of the Mentors this year. Are you going?

  8. Sheryll $ Critters. says:

    What a wonderful wedding themed party and marriage!

  9. TerriC/HoustonLady says:

    Hi Diane,
    What a beautiful couple! Here’s wishing them many blessings. Thanks for sharing : )

  10. Looks like the wedding had ‘fun’ written all over it! So many creative touches uniquely yours. Very refreshing to see such a relaxed, casual setting, the candid images. The photo of Ed playing croquet with the little girl looks like a print ad for a ‘liquid refreshment’ product or men’s clothing line from an upscale magazine. :) My father was a professional photographer so we grew up with him spending many a Saturday off taking wedding pics (in the 50s, 60s, 70s). Mostly b&w, mom did some pastel tinting. Interesting to see how weddings have evolved over the decades (with some now revisiting the ‘vintage’ look). Thanks for sharing, Diane!

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Cam – My daughter has a friend who wants to have a side business as a wedding photographer. She took most of the photos at the wedding. I took a few myself, including the one of Ed you mentioned. It is come out nice. Just a lucky shot when everything simply came together, light, angle, etc. :-)

      Growing up with your parents in the business must have been interesting to have seen how the industry has grown and changed and like most things, see the trends come back around again.

  11. Connie Johnson says:

    Thanks for sharing the lovely wedding pics! It must be something with weddings in this era…our son got married two weeks ago and they kept it all very, very simple but lovely! Congratulations on the new son :)

  12. Ashley @ the handmade home says:

    This is awesome, Diane! Love it. The donuts are my fave :D congratulations – everything and everyone is beautiful. ;}

  13. What a beautiful wedding! Thanks for sharing such a wonderful event. More photos would have been perfectly fine by me. Congratulations Diane.

  14. Absolutely gorgeous wedding pictures! And the bride is lovely and looked just like her mama!

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Thanks Katie – XO

  15. Oh…how wonderful it all looked! The setting, the style of wedding, your daughter’s dress…all wows in my book. Congrats to the happy couple. I’m betting now, you could do with a bit of a rest. Thanks for posting all the pics! ;)

  16. Kimberly Bruhn says:

    Congrats to your expanding family! Everything looked just
    like the right sort of elegant and fun!

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Thank you Kimberly

  17. Congratulations! What a lovely wedding. I liked the popcorn bar! And you looked beautiful (I could tell you were on the left ;) )

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Jen – Thanks. I got the idea for the popcorn bar on Pinterest. It was a huge hit. Most of my friends can tell my twin sister and I apart, but they get a kick out of the way we talk, move, and express ourselves the same way when they see us together.

  18. Elaine Williams in Baltimore says:

    OMG! I loved everything. What a neat idea for the venue. Kelly looks exactly like you but your sister – well that’s just crazy. I thought I was seeing double. So cute that you two dressed alike. Hubby ain’t bad either! LOL. The two attendants was genius. My son and his wife had 10 (YES 10) on each side when they got married in Aug 2014. It was pandemonium plus! It looks like you all had fun pre and post wedding. Get some rest. The blog can wait.

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Thanks for the good advise Elaine. I am doing just that and slowly getting back into my daily routine. Kelly does look like me and my youngest, Mandy looks like Ed. The wedding we went to in Philadelphia had 12 – 6 on each side, which I thought was a lot. Wow 10 attendants at your sons wedding. That is a lot. I am sure it made both your son and his wife to have so many friends right there with them. :-)

  19. Carol Heartfelt Whimsies says:

    What a beautiful wedding! Loved the venue and the decor!
    The popcorn and doughnut ideas are fabulous!!!
    Also—your hair looks darling!
    Please tell your daughters they looked absolutely beautiful!!

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Carol – Thanks. :-) I will tell my daughters. It will make their day. I am loving my hair, the styling ease and not having to worry about touching up the every two weeks with hair color. I found the ideas for the popcorn bar and donut stand on Pinterest. I am usually adding ideas to Pinterest. It was nice to use it to find ideas.

  20. Congratulations! The wedding looked wonderful! My daughter got married 6 months ago and loved planning it with her but it is a lot of worK! Looks like all of your skills came in handy to make such a nice wedding for your daughter. Thank you for share….I love weddings!

  21. MarianneB says:

    Congratulations! Thanks for sharing! The Bride was beautiful and I especially loved your gingham dress, so “of the moment”! Best wishes—-and though you stayed in Stone Harbor—-I know that boardwalk….OCNJ! ?

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Marianne – You have a good eye and of course those in the know, know that there is no boardwalk in Stone Harbor. On our way home we had to go north to get on the AC Expressway so we decided to stop and eat breakfast at Browns on the OC boardwalk. We also went to Shrivers to get some taffy. That is where I took the photo. :-) It was a beautiful day, which made it really hard to leave on our 11 hour trip home.

  22. Beautiful wedding Dianne. Kelly’s dress was drop dead gorgeous! The pictures are amazing. Thanks for sharing such a lovely event.

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Vikki – I forgot to mention in the post that the dress Kelly wore was my younger sister Laura’s wedding dress. It was the perfect fit and style.

      1. I think it is so wonderful to be able to use a family ‘heirloom’ like a wedding dress. I forgot to mention that I fell in love with Mandy’s shoes! I just looked at the post for a second time and saw the video. Don’t know how I missed it. What a fun wedding. Did they go to Hawaii for their honeymoon? Wishing Kelly and Roger the very best.

  23. Susan Verbaan says:

    Once again you show your talents as a designer. I love that the wedding was personal and not a great big showy event. Venue was amazing and your were blessed to have a beautiful day. The simplicity of the decor and that you made it, was more meaningful then the overblown excess that is so popular these days. Loved your nod to people who were missing?.
    Enjoy your blog, Sue

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Sue – Thanks. I was so happy that the weather was perfect. It made the day everything Kelly and Roger has hoped for. I got the idea for the board to show the grandparents and family and friends who passed away… on Pinterest. It was one small way to remember those that played a huge part in Kelly and Rogers lives.

  24. Kelly Elko says:

    Diane you did an amazing job! I’m sure Kelly was thrilled with the wedding and she looked beautiful as did you and your sister in matching dresses! I am suddenly craving doughnuts too! Glad everything turned out perfectly.

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Kelly – Thanks – It was a lot of work, but all the efforts paid off. The donuts were delish. They were made by Duck Donuts. The ones with the Bacon on them were the first to go. Hope you are enjoying your trip.

  25. What a beautiful wedding! I love that you kept it so casual and relaxing for everyone. Thank you for sharing. My daughter is getting married in September and I’m totally stealing the popcorn station, the table seating cards and especially the “wish they were here” frame!

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Becky – Congrats to your daughter. September will be here before you know it. I hope all your prep goes smoothly and is as stress-free as possible. I got all the ideas for the wedding on Pinterest. There are quite a lot of pins showing all types and styles of weddings. Have you looked there yet for ideas?

  26. Thank you for sharing such a special and fun occasion. Congratulations!

  27. Beth at Unskinny Boppy says:

    Oh it all looks so FUN! What a great wedding! Congrats to Kelly and you too, mama! You did a great job!! I hope the Pinterest traffic you’ll get from that fabulous donut tiered stand earns enough pageviews to pay for the whole wedding. :D

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Beth – Thanks. :-) I made sure when I was making the donut stand that I got a lot of photos to create a tutorial post. I am hoping that it will become an evergreen post. Would love it if it gets lots of pageviews.

  28. Lovely wedding. Looks like a beautiful and memorable event for the lucky couple. Thanks for sharing and you deserve some time off when you have such an important event and besides it renews your engines!!

  29. Catherine says:

    How wonderful Diane! Thank you for sharing this happy occasion with us. Your donut stand is just great! What will become of it now?
    I’m so glad that you took some time for yourself, Diane. You need to take a break from your busy schedule and just chill every once in awhile. It’s just good for the spirit to refresh and re-energize. Good for you, and thank you for taking care of yourself.

    Have a happy summer!

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Catherine –

      I will hold on to the donut stand just in case my younger daughter may want to use it when she gets married. In the meantime, one of my friends asked to use it for cupcakes for her sons wedding. Maybe after that I will rent it out. :-)

  30. Gail Vernali says:

    Congratulations to the new larger family! Lovely photos, love the one of you and your twin sister, too funny. The donut stand came out great, do you think that would hold cupcakes? I may need to borrow it in October. Welcome back.

  31. Sylvia Robinson says:

    I enjoy your column so much. The wedding pictures were gorgeous.
    I teared up when I saw “Wish you were here”. I think I’ll include this in future
    family get-togethers to include the people we miss in our lives. Thank you!!

    1. Diane Henkler says:

      Hi Sylvia – I found the idea for the Wish You Were Here board on Pinterest. It tweaked it to fit the style of the wedding using an old frame, cardboard and burlap. I will be sharing a tutorial soon.

  32. This was beautiful! Thank you for sharing. Our daughter is getting married next July and is also planning on having donuts. As another reader commented, I too would appreciate a tutorial on how to make your donut stand. :) P.S. perhaps it’s my iPad, but the video gives a “this video is not available” error :’(

  33. What an exciting event and so glad you took the time to enjoy everything.
    You have a beautiful family. ?
    Can’t wait see more about the DIY’s. Welcome back ?

  34. Amy Bohner says:

    It was a beautiful wedding… out did yourself! It was so nice to see the girls all grown up! I will share these pictures with teachers from Nash!

  35. Teresa Emrich says:

    What an exciting time for your family. Wedding was well planned and executed. We all create such a hassle when planning our children’s weddings, but you had just the right idea. This special time should be fun and memorable for all, not an exhausting time. GREAT, GREAT JOB…..THE newly weds and families will remember this day for a long time to come.

  36. Congratulations Diane and entire family! Looks like it was a lovely, relaxing event. I especially loved the tiered donut stand with the gorgeous, colorful flowers on top and at the base!

  37. Lynda @Me and My Pink Mixer says:

    Congratulations to your daughter! I live in Harrisonburg and have been to several weddings at Hermitage Hill – it’s such a pretty venue.

    Our daughter is getting married next June and I love all of your details, especially the popcorn bar and donut stand. Our daughter & her fiance want donuts too, so I hope you’ll do a tutorial on the stand! It looks like it was a beautiful wedding and I loved all of the photos. Congrats!

  38. Lorraine Champion says:

    Thank you so much for sharing this beautiful wedding with us. The venue, the decorations, everything was just perfect. You are so very creative.

  39. Love everything about this, congrats! You look fantastic!

  40. Joanne B. says:

    Glad to hear you had some well deserved R&R although I was beginning to worry! Lovely pictures from your lovely family event. I especially loved that you described the day as a “wedding themed party”! Lots of work but done with love. Like mother/like daughter! Doing things in her own style! She certainly learned from the best!

  41. Laura at Duke manor farm says:

    Okay, I’m crying. Love all the pics especially the one of y’all walking Kelly. The whole event looked lovely . Congrats to roger and kelly.

  42. What a fun wedding! Love how casual and relaxed everyone is. The venue is gorgeous!

  43. Karen baetzel says:

    Hi Diane – you and Ed look fabulous! So happy for you and Kelly and family. Love the blog. Karen and Bernie

  44. Lisa Schipritt says:

    Just Beautiful!!! Thank you so much for sharing!!!!

  45. I so enjoyed the photos of this beautiful wedding and all the effort put into making this a wonderful event. Congratulations!

  46. Exhausting but so worth it, look at the smiles on everyone’s face. Beautiful wedding for a beautiful daughter. Congratulations to all.

  47. Now this was fun and simple. I hate weddings where eb eff rything is so stiff and formal. This looked so fun and everyone looked relaxed!

    Donuts were awesome looking and the popcorn bar great idea!

    People relaxing and playing games!!!

    Great job!

  48. What a delightfully fun event! They and everyone who attended will remember it forever, and smile at each and every memory. You did yourself proud, Diane! And I must say it’s amazing how much Kelly looks like you! By the way, I knew it was you on the left….without you even saying it!

  49. I love weddings, especially ones that the couple seems to be so happy. Thank you for taking time to share such wonderful memories. Congratulations to all.

  50. alda ellis says:

    Congratulations on your beautiful daughter’s wedding. I do weddings every week, and understand how much work is involved! I have read your blog for years and love your creative talents…thank you for sharing such a special day with us all….hugs!

  51. Congratulations Diane and family! What a beautiful wedding and the bride and groom just beamed! We too are getting ready for our son’s wedding in 23 days. I am learning to use a Cricut, with no manual, for the first time so I can make signs. I could feel your exhaustion from here, but we would do no less for our children. I hope you catch up on some well deserved rest!

  52. Congratulations and thanks for sharing the pix of such a wonderful event!