Filter by Category:

real wedding::50’s inspired garden party at mill creek barns (part 1)

Megan+Will tied the knot on Sunday, June 27th at Mill Creek Barns. When we arrived to setup at noon we were quickly greeted by an onslaught of rain that lasted for at least an hour. But by the time the bride arrived, the groomsmen were getting dressed, and the final touches were getting put on, the skies cleared and gave way to a beautiful clear sky for their 3:00 ceremony! I love those kind of days!

Megan chose a 50’s garden party as the inspiration for her wedding design, and it was a great fit with the venue, and a fun change of pace from traditional wedding decor! The color combo of Red & Turquoise was just fabulous, and all of the little details she incorporated really tied the whole design together! When you choose to do something very stylistic for your wedding (such as an era-inspired wedding) you really have to go for it, and Megan went all out, from the clothing and flower choices to the accessories, centerpieces and fabrics, and it was stunning.

One thing that made this wedding so special was the fact that the bride and her family and friends were extremely involved in the planning, as well as the creation of many of the DIY Details. See all of the details of the DIY loveliness below!


The Dress::Megan bought her dress on Ebay and added her personal flair with some custom alterations. As you can see, it was absolutely beautiful and very unique.

The Flowers::Megan made a stop at A New Leaf in Chicago, before heading to Michigan, and created her bridesmaids bouquets out of vintage carnations, zinnias, hypericum berries and artichoke. Her bouquet was a beautiful combo of lambs ear, peonies and hydrangea.

Centerpieces:: The beautiful paper flowers were made by the brides mom and a slew of her friends recruited to help! They were placed in vintage soda bottles, and milk glass vases that Megan had collected, and we incorporated vintage broaches, necklaces and candy dishes amongst the tables!

Escort flags:: I loved these, and of course, they were hand-crafted by the bride! Very unique, colorful, and a perfect complement to the colorful candy buffet!

I’ll be honest, I pretty much loved everything about this wedding, and when it came down to sharing photos from Ben Pancoast Photography, it was hard to choose! So look for Part 2 later today!

real weddings::a beautiful summer wedding at millcreek barns in southwest michigan


Earlier this summer we posted a few pictures from the Michigan wedding of Megan+Greg, the first wedding at Mill Creek Barns in Watervliet! I wanted to share some of the amazing professional photos we received from their fantastic photographers, Two Pair Photography, and I hope you enjoy them as much as we enjoyed planning this fun Michigan wedding!


Mill Creek Barns has a beautiful outdoor ceremony area, but a traditional catholic wedding was very important to the couple, so the ceremony was held at St. Bernard’s, and we utilized the outdoor ceremony area for a fun and beautiful cocktail hour, complete with an outdoor bar featuring Michigan beers and wines, delicious passed appetizers by the always-delicious CK Catering, and a lovely iced tea and lemonade bar, complete with mini mason jar glasses.

ceremony collage

MillCreek Barns has so many beautiful details throughout, making it such a unique and lovely venue to host your Southwest Michigan wedding. The grounds, which feature another barn as well, have so many areas to take beautiful photos, you can stay right on the property and still take some fantastic photos!


Each table was named after the location of an “adventure” the couple took, complete with a picture of them—Megan+Greg are quite the adventurers considering there were 20+ tables! The escort cards were planted in tins of grass with a hand-painted sign reading “find your own adventure.”  Check out our post on more creative table numbers we loved this season!


Centerpieces were created by Stella Event Design, using Hydrangea stems, and accented with stock and branches re-purposed from the pew arrangements created for the ceremony. Half of the tables were adorned with the large mason jar and hydrangea centerpieces, while the other half  featured candles made with small mason jars tied with raffia and paper flowers. The wood chargers used as centerpiece bases were purchased from a local artisan and are available to rent from Stella Event Design.


Montage, out of Kalamazoo, rocked the barn and the dance floor was literally packed all night long! Guests came armed with boas, hats, and silly masks to create their own fun on the dance floor—it was an incredibly fun party and celebration of this fun couple!


  • Ken+Katy at Basilica of the Sacred Heart at Notre Dame and The Heritage Center in St. Joseph, Michigan
  • Lisa+Bart at the Blue Dress Barn in Southwest Michigan
  • Yana+Brannon at Shadowland Pavilion and The Heritage Center in St. Joseph, Michigan
  • Kate+Mitch at Shadowland Pavilion and The Heritage Center in St. Joseph, Michigan
  • Stefanie+Jim at Santaniello’s and Weko Beach in Bridgman, Michigan

real wedding sneak peek::adam+carrie at mill creek barns in southwest michigan

On Sunday, we had the pleasure of working with Adam+Carrie as we coordinated their fun & personal wedding at Mill Creek Barns! Carrie picked an absolutely beautiful color palette, featuring orange, yellow and blue hues! Yellow and orange tipped dahlias, peach hypericum berries and peach calla lilies were featured in the bouquets, centerpieces and ceremony arrangements. In lieu of a traditional cake, the couple opted for cupcakes by Dee’s Specialty Cakes, and they were absolutely delicious! Guests were also treated to a sweets table, complete with cartons of milk and “silly straws.” A firepit on the property served as extra fun for guests who wanted to enjoy S’Mores provided by the couple. The Matt Stedman Band kept guests out on the dance floor all night, and even provided beautiful fiddle & keyboard accompaniment for the ceremony.
millcreek barns
One of my favorite things about this wedding was all of the personal touches they incorporated into the day. At the ceremony, each guest was giv en a beautiful painted stone heart, which they were asked to hold throughout the ceremony, and to fill with their love and support. At the end of the ceremony, the hearts were dropped into a beautiful turquoise tin to be saved for the couple to keep in the future. At each table, a pine log held a picture of the couple at the table that was married the longest, including a fun fact or quirky comment about their own love story!  I also loved that they created an “Adventure Book” to use as their guest book—the Adventure book was a beautiful handmade scrapbook, outlining Adam+Carrie’s journey as a couple. Guest could write a message on beautiful squares of paper to later be added to the book!Overall, this was such a fun wedding, and we had a wonderful time being a part of it! *All photos by Stella Event Design


Megan+Greg at Mill Creek Barns in Watervliet, Southwest Michigan

Lisa+Bart at the Blue Dress Barn in Millburg, Southwest Michigan

Yana+Brannon at Shadowland Pavilion and The Heritage Center in St. Joseph, Michigan

Kate+Mitch at Shadowland Pavilion and The Heritage Center in St. Joseph, Michigan

Stefanie+Jim at Santaniello’s and Weko Beach in Bridgman, Michigan

Jessica+Bryan’s beach wedding and reception at The Veranda at the Whitcomb in St. Joseph, Michigan

the perfect venue for your 2010 wedding in southwest michigan


I love that Southwest Michigan has some amazing wedding venues. From barns to vineyards to elegant historical buildings, the lake shore area has a lot to offer to brides looking to plan an amazing Michigan wedding. However, just a word to the wise that these venues fill up fast. If you’re a 2010 bride, now is the time to secure that dream venue! So get out there, make some visits, and find that special place that will make your wedding day everything you’ve hoped for!

If you need some help finding your perfect Michigan wedding venue, feel free to contact us, we love to help brides and grooms find wedding location in St. Joseph, New Buffalo, Saugatuck, South Haven, Holland, Grand Haven, Spring Lake, Muskegon, Leeland, and beyond!

**Blue Dress Barn Photo By Monika Caban Photo, Heritage Center by Stella Event Design, Veranda @ The Whitcomb by Zdanis Photography, MillCreek by Stella Event Design

real wedding::megan+greg at mill creek barns

If you’ve been reading this blog lately or follow us on twitter or facebook, you know we’ve been excited about our first wedding of the season at the brand new Mill Creek Barns! Saturday was the big day, and even though the morning started out rainy, Megan+Greg ended up with a beautiful day for a Southwest Michigan wedding! Megan+Greg had a very fun and unique wedding that was filled with their own personalities and personal touches, and it turned out absolutely beautiful and perfect for them! All photographs are courtesy of the talented duo Tressie+Chad at Two Pair Photography!


Despite morning rain, the sun came out and we had a wonderful cocktail hour outside with passed appetizers, a lemonade and iced tea bar (complete with mason jars to sip from) and an outdoor bar with Michigan beers & wines handpicked by the couple.


Inside the dining hall we decorated tables with burlap overlays, tree ring chargers, and mason jars we filled with hydrangeas and wildflowers or candles.  In honor of the couples love for adventurous trips, each table was named for a trip or “adventure” the couple has been on, complete with a picture of the couple at that location. The escort cards sprang from tins of grass with a sign stating, “Find Your Own Adventure.” The nights menu hung on a hand-painted canvas and a delicious dinner was served family-style by CK Catering! After dinner, guests moved into the Dance Hall where Montage kicked off the night, and guests never sat down again!


Here are a few of their beautiful ceremony at St. Bernards! Megan was just one of the happiest brides I have ever seen and her smile was contagious! Thanks to all of the vendors that made this first event of the year so successful and a big Thanks to Megan+Greg for letting us be a part of your special day!

ceremony collage


Ken+Katy at Basilica of the Sacred Heart at Notre Dame and The Heritage Center in St. Joseph, Michigan

Lisa+Bart at the Blue Dress Barn in Southwest Michigan

Yana+Brannon at Shadowland Pavilion and The Heritage Center in St. Joseph, Michigan

Kate+Mitch at Shadowland Pavilion and The Heritage Center in St. Joseph, Michigan

Stefanie+Jim at Santaniello’s and Weko Beach in Bridgman, Michigan

mill creek barns

Mill Creek Barns is the sister property of the Blue Dress Barn and is located in Watervliet, Michigan in Keeler Township. We planned several 2009 weddings at Mill Creek Barns and love the natural charm it has. There are fun details throughout the property including vintage items, original artwork, a beautiful outdoor ceremony area, and white paper lanterns above the dining area.


Brides getting married at Mill Creek may consider Day-of coordination services to help with set-up, coordinate the ceremony (and moving guests from the ceremony to cocktail hour), assisting vendors with deliveries, coordinating catering & bar services, and tearing down decor at the end of the night. Mill Creek brides have the opportunity to bring in their own catering, bar service and other vendors which can be a great budget-saver, but entails a bit more work for the bride and family! Stella Event Design can help design services that fit your budget and will allow you to enjoy your wedding! Full-service planning is also available to help you create the amazing rustic-chic wedding day you’ve envisioned, from start to finish!

What one Mill Creek bride says about working with Stella Event Design:

“Stella Event Design saved my sanity! There were parts of my wedding that I really wanted to have control over and othe parts that didn’t matter to me at all. Jessica at Stella Event Design was able to accomodate me with a “partial planning” package that fit perfectly with my needs. She is quick to respond to emails and phone calls and is flexible with times to meet in person. She is very familiar with the local area and its vendors and helped me stay on budget. When it comes to above and beyond, Jessica was awesome. She returned all of my rented items for me the next day as well as my alcohol that we didn’t use. I ordered wholesale flowers and she was able to put them together to create my centerpieces and they looked beautiful. I really can’t rave about her enough. She’s calm in chaos, super organized, and obviously loves her job! I would recommend her service to anyone.”

-Megan, Married 5.16.09, from Chicago, Illinois


All Photos by Two Pair Photography