A Romantic, Autumnal Wedding at Linden Place in Bristol, Rhode Island

Rachel Powers (37 and a history teacher) and John Baldaserini (39 and a web developer) planned a sophisticated fall wedding with undeniable old-world

Rachel Powers (37 and a history teacher) and John Baldaserini (39 and a web developer) planned a sophisticated fall wedding with undeniable old-world charm. A venue that combined rustic elegance and regional history was a must for the pair, and Linden Place in Bristol, Rhode Island, offered just that. The early-19th-century home boasts a long, rich history—having entertained more than its fair share of presidents, celebrities and local bigwigs in its heyday—and exudes turn-of-the-century opulence with its magnificent gardens and exquisite Federal-style rooms. The day started with a tented ceremony overlooking Linden Place’s expansive, manicured lawns, followed by a reception in the mansion’s carriage house ballroom. “We were also able to use parts of the Bristol Museum at Linden Place in addition to the ballroom for our reception, which was a nice touch for our guests,” Rachel says. Drawing inspiration from still life paintings and the luxurious feel of the venue itself, the couple worked with Flowers by Semia to bring their vision for a vintage, autumnal affair to life. Shades of deep burgundy, forest green, burnt orange, peach, plum and gold gave the day a dramatic, romantic vibe, while floral arrangements abundant in unexpected elements like artichokes, fruits, nuts and foliage transformed the carriage house ballroom, where the reception took place, into a work of art. Clockwork of Boston provided the sound track for the day, filling the cocktail hour with smooth jazz and performing hits across a variety of genres and generations during the reception. “We wanted the wedding to be elegant and intimate, but also relaxed,” Rachel says. “John and I figured if we found the right vendors, along with the help of our parents, it would all come together.”

Textured, Rustic Fall Bridal Bouquet
Blue Watercolor L.K. Bennett Shoes
Red Ruby Engagement Ring
Elana of Spoon and Sailor Letterpress designed all of Rachel and John’s stationery, embellishing each with custom illustrations of fall-inspired elements, like acorns and autumnal foliage. Sage and plum hues complemented the rest of the wedding’s seasonally inspired palette, while giving the invitations a sophisticated feel. “Elana uses a 100-year-old press and handcrafts all the pieces,” Rachel says. “I loved the history of it all, and working with Elana made it all very personal.
Channeling the elegance of their historic venue, Rachel’s bridal look was the picture of old-world sophistication and class. She donned a strapless, A-line Paloma Blanca gown from Alexandra’s Boutique in Fall River, Massachusetts, with a lace, sweetheart-shaped bodice and ivory satin skirt. She added a crystal-embellished belt to highlight her waist and add a touch of sparkle. “I was also very lucky to borrow a vintage fox fur stole belonging to one of my best friends, which kept me warm on that chilly fall day,” Rachel says.
Rachel and John gave Semia of Flowers by Semia creative license over the wedding’s florals, and she didn’t disappoint. Oversize arrangements of roses, grasses, ferns, vines, amaranth, fall foliage, hydrangeas and more were arranged in stately silver urns, infusing the ceremony tent with a burst of bright, seasonal color. Above the spot where the couple exchanged vows, the talented florist suspended a garland of lush greenery and hanging candles, which created a focal point for the space.
Large Fall Floral Ceremony Arrangements
When it came to planning their wedding, Rachel and John took matters into their own hands. They passed on a wedding planner and pulled off the entire event on their own—with the help of a few talented wedding professionals, of course.
Textured Succulent Cocktail Hour Centerpieces
Having seen one of Flowers by Semia’s living art pieces, Rachel knew she and John had to have one for their reception. Semia created a large, eye-catching display of succulents, air plants and moss in rich shades of green, slate blue and purple, which created the backdrop for the moss-covered log that held all of the handwritten escort cards. “Those succulents are still happily living at our home,” Rachel says.
After exchanging vows under a tent overlooking Linden Place’s expansive, manicured lawns, the newlyweds and their guests moved indoors to the mansion’s carriage house ballroom for the reception. With its tan brick walls, large fireplace and wood paneled floors, Linden Place in Bristol, Rhode Island, had an innate sense of warmth, that was highlighted not only by the opulent, still-life-inspired centerpieces, but by the abundant candlelight that filled the spacious room.
Rachel’s bouquet, designed by Flowers by Semia, was a true work of art. The statement arrangement featured a spectrum of rich autumnal hues, like plum, burgundy, fiery red, golden rod and forest green. The bouquet included classic elements like garden roses and orchids displayed alongside cascading vines, wildflowers and assorted greenery to give the fresh bunch a rustic, textured appearance.
Wanting a venue that combined rustic elegance and regional history, Rachel and John turned to the historic Linden Place in Bristol, Rhode Island. The early-19th-century home housed some of the area’s most prominent families in its heyday and had played host to four presidents, as well as the famous and the fabulous. In addition to its rich history, the mansion offered a stunning backdrop for the elegant fall affair with its sculpture-filled gardens, magnificent ballroom and striking old-world architecture.
With an autumn wedding in the works, Rachel and John wanted the decor to capture the essence of the season. The couple envisioned centerpieces and tablescapes that incorporated elements from still life paintings like gilded accents, warm candlelight and an assortment of seasonal fruits. Flowers by Semia transformed their vision into reality, creating textured arrangements with succulents, artichokes, acorns, fruits and lots of richly hued foliage, which played up the venue’s rustic, vintage feel.