A Rustic, Waterfront Wedding at The Bottenhorn Cottage on Lake Leelenau, Michigan
When mutual friends introduced Amber (31 and a sales manager at Tiffany & Co.) and Aaron (30 and a real estate manager) at a rooftop dinner in Atlanta, the two weren't expecting to fall so hard...or so quickly. "I found out he was moving to Denver a few weeks later," Amber says. "He invited me to yet another dinner with friends and we ran into each other a few more times during those last few weeks in Atlanta. The week that he left, I was visiting a friend when Aaron showed up at the door with a single sunflower that he had picked from the side of the road." The two began dating and later got engaged during a birthday trip to Aruba in 2013. "We took a long walk on the beach and Aaron stopped under a thatched roof hut and proposed under the moonlight," Amber says. For their September wedding in northern Michigan, the Orlando-based couple looked to Lake Leelenau's Bottenhorn Cottage. "Aaron's great-grandfather built 'Bott Cott,'" Amber explains. "Most of his family still owns cottages up and down the street and everyone used to vacation there in the summer. It's still a tradition they like to keep up from year to year." Due to the location's natural beauty, the couple wanted to showcase the rustic, serene lakeside by keeping the decor to a minimum. "Living in Florida and planning a wedding in Michigan seems like it'd be difficult, but we used a family friend to help us pick trusted vendors -- we even had all of our vendors picked in two days!," the bride says. "Aaron and I did a majority of the planning ourselves, so we searched online for decorating ideas and inspiration." But as much time as they spent planning out the decorative details, the bride says one element was more important than the rest. "We spent more time picking out the music compared to any other wedding detail," she says. "We wanted everyone to be comfortable with the mindset of putting on their boots, dancing like nobody is watching and celebrating love'."