Nathalie & Cory’s Green Picnic wedding

If I were getting married in the Maryland area, I can say with absolute certainty that we’d be being photographed by Jocelyn of Studio Matthews Photography. You might think this is because she takes really stylish wedding photographs (true). But that’s not really it… the real reason is I *like* Jocelyn. She’s been a sponsor of this blog for a long time now, and she even wrote a little article for the site on negotiating with vendors. But really, she’s talented, she’s kind, and she’s really down to earth. She also shot Nathalie & Cory’s stunning green wedding, and you guys are going to love it. The bride, Nathalie, wrote up all the details for you, including a plethora of etsy links. Natalie, take it away….

Cory and I were married on a hot Sunday afternoon in the Hemlock Grove of Woodend Sanctuary in front of 60 guests.Where your wedding was held: Woodend Sanctuary is an old mansion built in the 1920s that houses the Audubon Naturalist Society, the largest and oldest independent environmental organization in the Washington, DC region. Woodend Sanctuary also strives to be as green as possible in their practices.What made your wedding creative: I am a full-time graphic designer and am also lucky enough to work at Gilah Press + Design, a letterpress studio located here in Baltimore, so of course I had to design all of the paper goods in the ceremony!Some other creative touches: Writing our own vows the night before the ceremony. After the rehearsal dinner we holed ourselves up in our hotel and wrote them next to each other. We tried reading them to each other over and over again so that we couldn’t cry at the ceremony (we’re very emotional people) but we still could barely get through them during the ceremony. The tears were non-stop!We wanted some sort of photobooth after seeing a similar setup in Lena Corwin’s wedding. We found a big patterned fabric of green berries at our local thrift store, tied it to rope that spanned across two trees and used that as the backdrop. Our wonderful photographer, Jocelyn of Studio Mathewes set up lights and wrote down times on a chalkboard that let guests know when they should show up at the booth to get their photo taken. As the night went on and people drank a little more, the photos turned out even more hilarious.

My number one favorite wedding detail had to be the guestbook that my co-worker Whitney and her husband Jacob created for us as a wedding gift. I had no say in the design of the book since it was a surprise and it completely blew my mind. Jacob used a salvaged piece of wood that he refinished and hand-carved our monogram into for the cover. They hand-cut all of the tags that slipped into light brown coin-sized envelopes that are glued into the book and tied the ends of them with organic cotton yarn. Guests were able to slide the tags in and out of the envelopes to either sign their name, write a little message or get creative. It is an incredible piece of art.What made your wedding thrifty: We used Etsy for some of the major parts of the wedding. A local Baltimore crafter named SmittenXOXO on Etsy created my birdcage veil and headpiece.My dress was custom made by Amanda Archerin San Francisco who always uses natural-fiber fabrics in her work. I gave her photos of a Priscilla of Boston dress I loved but definitely couldn’t afford and she went to work recreating it and making it her own.Beth Cyr, created our rings. She specializes in custom-made jewelry inspired by nature. We found two gorgeous rings in her store that have a beautiful patina bark texture to them and had them made for us in our ring sizes. They are one of my favorite parts of the wedding and I couldn’t believe how well priced they turned out to be.Along with Etsy, we tried to do as much as possible ourselves. For our centerpieces we used Cory’s mother’s vintage salt and pepper shakers, wood slices that Cory’s father created for us using fallen logs from his backyard, wood numbers we purchased and stained for the table numbers, and dozens of mason jars that we scored off of Craigslist that held bunches of herbs, plants and local, in-season flowers that Ellen of Local Color Flowers put together so beautifully for us.What made your wedding sane: Starting the wedding planning process well in advance was a huge help. It helped us concentrate on smaller details once the wedding date got closer and closer. But even with such good planning, I had to let go of a lot of projects I wanted included in the wedding. In the end we really just want everyone to have a good time while celebrating our love for each other.

A lot of my friends wanted to assist us with anything they could the day of, and boy, were they a big help. A few of them brought over the cupcakes, others escorted guests to the ceremony and brought gifts inside the mansion, and family members were always on hand to keep us stress-free and make sure we were having as much fun as possible. I don’t know what I would have done without them.

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  • thank you so much, meg!

  • This is a beautiful wedding! Love the invitation design and Nathalie's dress.

  • This wedding is so fantastic I almost can't stand it!

  • How beautiful! I love her veil!

  • Loving the dress…!

  • Thank you so much for this post! I'm getting married in Baltimore in a year (little less) and this is a huge inspiration. Thank you thank you thank you!

  • hi meg!
    first, awesome wedding. thanks for sharing!
    second, i've given you a little blog award over at

    you know, for being awesome and all:)

  • Beth Cyr is fabulous — I recently purchased my fiance's wedding band from her, and it looks great.

  • Jocelyn is awesome. She shot our engagement session and I still love looking at our photos! This wedding is one of the best ones she's shot!

  • So cute!! I love the fern curtain backdrop for photos! :)

  • I would love to do an article on your wedding for – so inspirational! If you are interested, please email me at (goes for your readers as well – the more the better! Let's show the world how easy it is to go green).

  • really, really sweet wedding. love it. congrats to the couple!

  • Thats so wonderful that she gave all the links of where she got some of her wedding items. This is such a romantic wedding. I love the yellow flower in her hair. Beautiful. Thank you for sharing with us!

  • Nathalie (if you are reading this) – Your guest book is amazing! Any chance the friend who made it could post a "how-to"? I am actually getting married at Woodend in September!! Your wedding has provided a ton of inspiration!

  • Local Color Flowers loved being a part of this wedding! We were able to use great locally grown flowers that fit perfectly with the style and feel of the event! Nathalie's DIY knack was seen in all the small details. We also loved working with Jocelyn! We're looking forward to working together on another wedding at Woodend next summer!