A Contemporary Orange and Blue Wedding at Grange Insurance Audubon Center in Columbus, Ohio

After Suzette Matheson (32 and a graphic designer) and Brad Vrooman (31 and in IT) met online, they planned a first date for a Sunday. But they were so excited to meet each other, they scheduled a “nondate” the day before. “Needless to say, it went well, and we went ahead with our first official date the next day,” Suzette says. Their chemistry was undeniable. During their two-year engagement, they planned a colorful orange (Suzette’s favorite color) and turquoise (Brad’s favorite color) fall wedding at St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church in Columbus, Ohio, and a reception at the contemporary Grange Insurance Audubon Center. Their theme, “Swept Away,” was inspired by not only their feelings for each other but also their first-dance song of the same name, by the Avett Brothers, and the amount of “whirling and twirling” decor they incorporated: in the streamers at the church, on the wands waved by guests as the couple left the church, in the floral bouquets, on the photo booth backdrop and on every chair at the reception. “What better way to show movement than by using colorful streamers everywhere?” Suzette says. The flower girl carried a metal candleholder of flower petals rather than a traditional basket, and her sister served as the ring bearer (“Why can’t girls be ring bearers?” Suzette says), carrying a metal sphere with two rings tied to the inside. A brass quintet and a church organist provided the ceremony music (including the processional of “Orchard House” from the movie "Little Women"). Decor included streamers, a homemade photo booth and totems of alternating streamers and lanterns. Suzette and Brad served a fall-inspired meal, followed by an elaborate orange and blue ombre cake with a one-of-a-kind bee cake topper and homemade cookies and candies. On the dance floor, Brad’s friends serenaded Suzette to the song “Sweetheart.” While Suzette and Brad had the time of their lives at their own wedding, they admit they could have eliminated undue stress if they hadn't procrastinated. They advise future couples to plan ahead, decide on priorities well in advance, and do it up right. “Splurge on what’s really important to you, and scale back on elements that are not,” she says. After all, when you find that special someone who sweeps you away, a little splurge is worth it. —Chrissy Sorenson