A Chic, Rustic Wedding at Candlelight Farms Inn in New Milford, Connecticut

For their late-summer wedding in New Milford, Connecticut, Kimberly Brady (28 and a recruiter) and Peter Aquilino (33 and a professional firefighter)

For their late-summer wedding in New Milford, Connecticut, Kimberly Brady (28 and a recruiter) and Peter Aquilino (33 and a professional firefighter) pulled off a relaxed outdoor soiree that exuded rustic charm and sophistication. Set on a 600-acre estate surrounded by quaint ponds, paddocks and meadows, the Candlelight Farms Inn provided a picturesque backdrop for the elegant affair. “It had the rustic feel that we were going for, and everyone was able to enjoy the beautiful scenery,” Kimberly says. The day unfolded with an outdoor ceremony overlooking the lush landscape and rolling hills of the Candlewood Mountain valley. Framed by two majestic birch trees, Kimberly and Peter exchanged heartfelt vows. “We had a unity piece written by my sister-in-law’s mother, which was read by our mothers,” Kimberly says. “We wanted the ceremony to be simple and personal, which is exactly what it was.” The couple opted for understated decor to let the beauty of the setting shine through. Small bouquets of baby’s breath arranged in mason jars dotted the aisle, while the wedding party’s bouquets of brilliant purple, white and yellow blooms added a fresh pop of color to the expansive outdoor space. As a surprise, Peter made a grand entrance to the ceremony, riding in on a firetruck—a nod to his job. Cocktail hour followed on the property’s expansive lawn, as well as in the charming historic barn, where guests nibbled on pint-size eats like tomato soup shooters and mini-grilled cheese and played lawn games. A sailcloth tent hosted the dinner and dancing portion of the evening and was where Kimberly and Peter's vision for the day truly came to life. The open-air tent was dotted with a mix of rustic farm tables and beautifully dressed round tables, each bearing natural linens and ornate bouquets of bright hydrangeas, stock ranunculus, roses and wildflowers arranged in antiqued wooden planter boxes that Kimberly and her brother crafted themselves. To create an intimate, casual feel, dinner was served family style, and the newlyweds ditched the traditional wedding cake for strawberry shortcake that guests could enjoy at their leisure. A tip from Kimberly: “My husband and I had our own sweetheart table, and although I did not want to have this at first, it ended up being perfect. We were able to enjoy time together and have guests visit us as well.” —Libby MacCarthy

When they chose a design for their invitations, the couple enlisted the help of Peter’s friend Alissa, the owner of the stationery store the King’s Scribe. She effortlessly translated Peter and Kimberly’s vision for a simple yet elegant affair into a stunning invitation suite that struck the perfect balance of whimsy and minimalist chic.
Striking shades of purple popped up throughout the day, adding vibrancy and dimension to everything from the rustic floral arrangements dotting the reception tables to the bridesmaids’ Donna Morgan cocktail dresses. Airy purple chiffon and knee-length A-line silhouettes helped create a feeling of cohesion, while mix-and-match necklines let each woman showcase her own personality.
Vibrant bundles of hydrangeas, roses, veronica, eucalyptus and stock in shades of purple, green and white popped against the bridesmaids’ dark purple dresses. To play up the evening’s rustic aesthetic, blooms were arranged to create a textured appearance, and wildflowers were woven throughout.
Creating a laid-back environment for their guests was a top priority for Kimberly and Peter. To ensure everyone's comfort, the pair parted with tradition, encouraging guests to sit where they liked during the ceremony.
The flower girls’ attire perfectly captured Kimberly and her bridesmaid look. The duo walked down the aisle in flowing full tulle dresses adorned with brilliant purple bows. Their hair was perfectly coiffed into curled half-up styles, which mirrored Kimberly’s.
Before kicking off the festivities, Kimberly and Peter said “I do” in an outdoor ceremony overlooking hundreds of acres of lush forest, quaint ponds and rolling hills. Two majestic birch trees framed the pair as they exchanged vows, and petite arrangements of baby’s breath dotted the aisle.
After being pronounced husband and wife, the newlyweds and their guests headed to Candlelight Farms’s historic barn for cocktails, appetizers and lots of fun. Guests tried their hands at an assortment of lawn games while they whet their whistles and snacked on bite-size eats like tomato soup shooters and mini-grilled cheese.
Set against a backdrop of brilliant green landscape, natural linens and rustic wood, the centerpieces truly popped. Bundles of hydrangeas, roses, ranunculus, stock and an assortment of wildflowers in shades of pink, purple, white and peach brought the decor to life with their bright, summery colors and just-picked freshness.
With a relaxed yet sophisticated soiree in mind, Candlelight Farms Inn could not have been a more suitable spot to say “I do” for Kimberly and Peter. Between its breathtaking scenery and historic country charm, the venue checked all boxes, providing the rustic, laid-back feel the couple were after. Making the most of the setting, the pair opted for an open-air reception with panoramic views of the grounds.
Kimberly took on a few DIY projects to bring her rustic vision to life, while lending the decor a personalized feel. In addition to handcrafting the wooden planter boxes for the centerpieces with the help of her brother, she also painted and framed squares of burlap fabric to create the reception table numbers.
Before sitting down to a family-style dinner and fresh strawberry shortcake, Kimberly and Peter took to the dance floor, where they shared their first dance as husband and wife as their closest family members and friends looked on.