A Colorful Summer Wedding at a Private Residence in Henniker, New Hampshire

Samantha Clark (28 and a food-security and nutrition specialist) and Myles Fish (28 and a staffer for the secretary of state) planned an elegant backy

Samantha Clark (28 and a food-security and nutrition specialist) and Myles Fish (28 and a staffer for the secretary of state) planned an elegant backyard affair for their late-summer wedding in Henniker, New Hampshire, with a cheerful palette of vibrant hues and charming rustic details. “We let the backyard my family shares with their best friends serve as the inspiration for the wedding,” Samantha says. “We wanted to embrace the relaxed, country feel and let the surrounding woods and hills take the spotlight.” The event was truly a labor of love, with the couple calling upon the talents of their closest family members and friends to infuse the day with one-of-a-kind flair. “In a town of less than 5,000 people, we loved the idea of involving the community in our big day,” Samantha says. From the flowers to the wedding rings and the dozens of hand-painted signs dotting the property, even the smallest details were pulled off by the couple’s tight-knit community. The day began with an intimate ceremony on the lawn. Birch stumps topped with vibrant floral arrangements lined the aisle, leading to a hand-crafted birch ceremony arch draped in a lush garlands, under which Samantha and Myles exchanged their own vows. “Ultimately, we hoped our wedding day would be a joyous celebration with all our favorite people,” Samantha says. “We simply wanted people to have fun, so we filled the area with bold colors, big balloons and food trucks.” An alfresco celebration followed the ceremony, with the newlyweds ushering their guests to an open-air tent bursting with color. Bouquets of garden roses, stock, eucalyptus and more cascaded from antiqued silver vases, while pale blue table linens added a note of freshness to the decor. Fresh fruits de mer from renowned local food trucks were served on vintage floral plates, and Samantha and Myles treated guests to signature Moscow Mules, a nod to their short stint in the former Soviet Union. “Despite a small blip, our DJ proved to be one of the unsung heroes of the night. The dance floor was packed all night, which is exactly what we wanted,” Samantha says. “One of our favorite pictures captures a gorgeous moonlit sky, the perfectly lit tent and dozens of empty tables and a packed dance floor.” —Libby McCarthy

“Though it wasn’t purposeful, I think all our looks ended up reflecting the overall feeling of the wedding: relaxed yet elegant,” Samantha says. Even before she hit the bridal salon, Samantha knew she had to try on Monique Lhuillier’s Scarlett gown, a striking lace sheath-style design with dainty cap sleeves and a keyhole back. “I adored Monique Lhuillier’s Scarlett dress since the moment I saw it, so it was exciting when I tried it on and loved it then too,” she says.
From the bouquets to the bountiful centerpieces, a close family friend created all the colorful floral arrangements for Samantha and Myles’s wedding day. “The first time I cried on my wedding day was when she walked in with my bouquet—it was exactly what I wanted,” Samantha says. Filled with garden roses, dahlias, orchids, ranunculus and a vibrant mix of greenery, the arrangement exuded a sense of wild romance.
“It was important to us that our wedding party wore something that they would feel comfortable in and something that wouldn’t break the bank,” Samantha says. She and her bridesmaids found the perfect solution in knee-length chiffon dresses from Ann Taylor. The women personalized their look by choosing different necklines, while a bright shade of turquoise let their looks feel cohesive.
Adorned with whimsical white calligraphy and a eucalyptus garland dotted with vibrant purple blooms, Samantha and Myles’s welcome sign set a playful, romantic tone for the alfresco ceremony.
Using fallen brich trees, Samantha’s father handcrafted the whimsical wedding arch under which the couple exchanged vows. A family friend then adorned the rustic structure with a lush garland of eucalyptus, wispy greenery, hydrangeas, garden roses, orchids and dahlias that brought a pop of fresh color to the scene.
Samantha and Myles customized their ceremony where possible, writing their own vows and inviting their close friends and family members to do readings. The sentimental proceedings, as well as the location—Samantha’s childhood home—gave the day a bit of personal flair.
A tented reception followed the alfresco ceremony, where vibrant color and fresh florals ruled supreme. Pale blue table linens and arrangements of garden roses, stock, eucalyptus and more cascading from antiqued silver vases filled the expansive space with energy and life.
Samantha and Myles savored a few private moments during their reception at their sweetheart table. To set the spot apart from the rest, the couple adorned their chairs with panels of airy white tulle, silver "Mr." and "Mrs." signs and lush eucalyptus garlands.
Samantha and Myles hoped to achieve an atmosphere of laid-back elegance, and details like mismatched vintage china ensured that they did. Each table boasted its own set of dinnerware, with each plate adorned with an illustrated menu and sprigs of fragrant fresh herbs.
To say Samantha and Myles were foodies would be an understatement — the fun-loving pair even included pizza in their vows. “Though we weren’t going to serve pizza, having good food was important to us,” Samantha says. “We traveled around New England testing out different food trucks.” The pair enlisted the help of their favorites—including Cod Squad—to serve an unforgettable New England surf and turf meal that would go down in matrimonial history. “It was both fun and meaningful for us to get scallops at the truck and eat them off my great-grandmother’s plates,” Samantha says.