An Elegant, DIY Wedding in Lake Forest, Illinois
To-be-weds Anna Swarthout (29 and an advertising creative resource manager) and Matt Moschner (28 and a consultant at Boston Consulting Group) made one unexpected move after Matt popped the question 10 years into their relationship...they didn't share the news with a single person. "We didn't tell anyone about our engagement for a whole day," Anna says. "We spent the entire day together letting it sink in. It was so nice to focus on my new fianc? without the distractions and interruptions of phone calls and congratulatory texts." When the time came to plan their outdoor wedding on undeveloped prairie property, Anna enlisted the help of her parents to execute each and every DIY detail (one of the perks to having a contractor father!) "Since so much of our wedding was DIY, we relied heavily on friends and family to help create our day," she says. "It was truly a labor of love." Everything from the lampposts, walkways, bathrooms and flower boxes were crafted by hand – including a reception tent that was built using recycled materials from a recently demolished college nearby. Thanks to the natural, stunning backdrop, Anna and Matt stuck with a simple color palette of ivory and navy in order to let the natural elements of their day shine. Dressed in a white Rosa Clara sheath dress, the bride and her groom spent the night dancing under a full moon alongside guests to the sounds of the Ken Arlen Orchestra. The Italian newlyweds even paid homage to their heritage by gifting guests with cream-filled cannolis at the end of the night. "We displayed them with a little frame with a modified quote from 'The Godfather': 'Leave the fun, take a cannoli'," Anna says.