An Eclectic, Vintage-Inspired Wedding at the Spruceton Inn in West Kill, New York

Katie Mangano (31 and a creative director and graphic designer) and Jeff Denton (36 and a front-end web developer) met through mutual friends at a par

Katie Mangano (31 and a creative director and graphic designer) and Jeff Denton (36 and a front-end web developer) met through mutual friends at a party in Brooklyn, New York. Katie, from the Albany area, and Jeff, from the Rochester area, loved living in the city but shared an appreciation for unwinding in the peaceful, scenic forests of the Catskill Mountains. After getting engaged, they started looking for a nontraditional venue that would let them tailor their day to what they wanted. “We didn’t want to be just another wedding at a trendy barn,” Katie says. They narrowed their options to Hudson Valley or the Catskills, and after spending a night at the Spruceton Inn in West Kill, they fell in love with the wooded surroundings, rustic vibe and gracious inn owners. “It’s the kind of place where you feel immediately at ease,” Katie says. “It was the perfect place to get married.” The phrase they used to define their vision was “vintage eclectic,” with touches of rustic modernism. “Jeff and I are both collectors of random things, so creating a visual system of seemingly unrelated patterns and textures was a natural choice,” she says. Jeff is a fan of vintage plaid shirts, while Katie prefers modern, bold geometric styles, so they knew plaid would be part of the theme and the palette would include bright colors mixed with neutral tones. After they secured the venue, design choices came to life: bright orange and green alongside local topographic maps, large plaid patterns and vintage floral graphics. She explains, “Having a loose design system in place let us collect all the stuff we naturally like to use as decorations, from plaid thermoses and vintage arrows to gold geometric art papers.” Before the ceremony, guests were greeted with a campfire and spiked hot cider, and then everyone moved to a field behind the inn, in a spot along the edge of a creek. “It was very important to us to be by the water,” Katie says. The aisle was lined with growlers filled with wildflowers, umbrellas were stashed off to the side (just in case), and a wooden arbor—built by Katie's brother—was the focal point. The ceremony included a whiskey ceremony, where the couple poured unaged corn whiskey into a two-liter barrel; a ukulele version of the Muppets' “The Rainbow Connection”; and high-fives before reciting their vows. The party moved to a tent on the property, decorated in cafe-style lights, farm tables, wildflower centerpieces, a vegan meal (complete with pumpkin ravioli), a vegan chocolate cake and a playlist curated by the couple and their friends (“we crowdsourced songs with a line on the RSVP card,” Katie says). Despite many small moments of stress leading up to the wedding day (misprinted invitations, ill-fitting outfits, a hurricane watch), Katie says the payoff outweighed the stress and hours of DIY work. “Ultimately, the hurdles are part of creating something big and unique," she says. "It’s life. Nothing is perfect.” What made it perfect was working with a team of all-stars, going with what felt right and marrying each other. Says their photographer, Carina Romano, “Even though my socks and shoes were soaked through and I couldn’t feel my toes anymore, I could not stop taking photos of these two.” —Chrissy Sorenson

Katie and Jeff collaborated to design the invitations. Together, they created a series of bright cards, packaged in glassine envelopes. The cards were meant to evoke a collection of summer camp treasures.
The bridesmaids wore polka-dot lace sleeve cocktail dresses that matched the vintage feel of Katie’s tulle overlay and black-and-white accessories. “They are also just super-cute, affordable cocktail dresses from Nordstrom, so they can actually be worn again—for real,” Katie says. The flower girls wore polka-dot dresses, black tights, black shoes and cardigans. Rather than carry traditional bouquets, they carried buckets of flower petals.
Katie wore a short dress so she wouldn’t have to worry about “tromping through a field in a gown,” she says. She knew she wanted a dress appropriate for the fall weather, with sleeves and simple, classic lines. “The dress was the perfect mix of sophistication and whimsy,” she says, adding that it was also the “perfect canvas for accessorizing,” which she did with a feather hairpiece, a retro blusher veil, black-and-white pumps and a classic plaid stole. (It was unseasonably cold for October.) The look she was going for was “a bit vintage.” Jeff wore a plaid jacket, black pants, orange socks and oxford shoes with orange laces.
Wildflowers were accented with pops of orange dahlias.
A bright orange “Woo-Hoo!” sign was placed amid the wedding programs at the Spruceton Inn in West Kill, New York.
The couple had a whiskey ceremony instead of lighting a unity candle. They poured unaged corn whiskey (some from Brooklyn and some from upstate New York) into a two-liter barrel and will drink it on their first anniversary.
The bride’s brother built the wooden ceremony arbor by cutting the slabs from a fallen tree. Katie and Jeff hung geometric glass terrariums of light and dark green moss from the top of the arbor and stood in front of it during the ceremony.
Wooden arrow signs directed guests to the ceremony and reception at the Spruceton Inn in West Kill, New York.
Katie and Jeff designed and assembled all the decorations, including the paper garlands and vintage glasses. The centerpieces were wilflowers and billy buttons in tall glass vases, placed atop metallic patterned art papers. A "Better Together" sign said it all.
The tent was decked out with a black-and-white-checked dance floor and cafe lights. Color was added through wildflowers and vintage glassware.
A friend made the vegan cake with olive oil and avocado instead of butter and eggs, then topped it with bride (cat) and groom (goat) figurines, found on Etsy.com.