Bird Watching and Nature-Inspired Backyard Wedding at Couple's Home in Reisterstown, Maryland

Kim (29, Director of Operations at the Maryland State Golf Association) met Doug (32, Head Pro/ General Manager at the Carroll Tennis Center) while ou

Kim (29, Director of Operations at the Maryland State Golf Association) met Doug (32, Head Pro/ General Manager at the Carroll Tennis Center) while out with separate friends at a Baltimore pub. Three years later, the couple kayaked to a remote island where they were exploring gorgeous scenery when Doug proposed. The lovebirds celebrated their wedding at their Reisterstown, Maryland home.

Doug found Kim's antique diamond and pearl ring, a combination of the pair's birthstones, from an estate jeweler in Florida (Gesner Estate Jewelry). “He felt it suited my taste and knew I preferred an antique ring as opposed to a modern design,” says Kim.
Kim's Claire Pettibone dress was beige, cotton, toile print, lace dress with a deep V in the back and a bustle.
The bride consulted Crimson and Clover for her bouquet, requesting pops of white, red, purple and pink. The bursts of color stood out against the couple's natural, green lawn.
The bride wanted something a little off-beat, so she chose a Claire Pettibone dress with a deep V-back. Her shoes were light pink leather with a matching bow.
Doug wore a John Varvatos blue suit, a Burberry plaid tie and brown Frye shoes.
Crimson and Clover fashioned Doug's boutonniere to match the color scheme of red, pink, purple and white.
Kim and Doug each have one sister, so they decided to have them be their only attendants. “I wanted both sisters to be comfortable and feel beautiful in the dress they were wearing so I gave them two guidelines: the dress must be floor length and ivory.” Kim's sister wore Alfred Angelo, and Doug's sister wore Cynthia Steffe.
Kim and Doug posted a red and black sign outside their home to welcome guests to their wedding ceremony.
The couple's ceremony was held in the afternoon in their backyard underneath an ash tree. “I was a bit skeptical at first about hosting such a big event in our backyard, but after giving it some thought it became more appealing.  I think Doug convinced me when he said 'we can wake up every morning, drink coffee, and overlook the backyard where we were married,'” says Kim.
Kim and Doug hung mason jars filled with white hydrangea from the ash tree in their backyard.
Doug's uncle went online to get ordained so he could marry his nephew to Kim. He worked with the couple for several weeks to perfect the wording and message of the ceremony to ensure it illustrated their relationship.
During the ceremony, Kim's close friend and teammate from college read the poem “Scaffolding” by Seamus Heaney because it reminded the bride of her groom.
Kim and Doug shared their first kiss as newlyweds in their own backyard under an ash tree.
“We really love watching our backyard birds from our porch, so we thought a bird theme would be perfect for a backyard wedding,” says Kim. Rather than the traditional rice recessional throws, the couple passed out bags of birdseed that read “Toss for good luck as they walk up the aisle as husband and wife.”
Tapping into the couple's passion for bird watching in their backyard, the wedding guests tossed birdseed on the couple as they made their recessional walk.
The escort cards were names of backyard birds that the guests would match their place card to. The bird species on the cards were inspired by the birds Kim and Doug see in their backyard.
Crimson & Clover designed the floral arrangements to fit the natural wooded setting and the bride's request of ivory with pops of pink, red, purple and white.
Rustic floral arrangements with pops of ivory, pink, red and purple graced the couple's home throughout the day.
The couple rented pink feathered cocktail linens for three high top tables with votive candles for reception decor. The china and silverware on each table had an antique feel.
Kim and Doug shared their first dance to Fiona Apple's “Across the Universe,” because it is one of Doug's favorite Beatles songs. The couple was inspired when they heard the song together a few weeks before the wedding.
The wedding cake featured a vertical cascade of pink and white roses and two handmade felt birds purchased from Blossom Hill shop on Etsy. The cake itself was a plain pound cake with vanilla buttercream.
"We were trying to decide on a location with an outdoor ceremony space that would be within our budget. After a few weeks of searching, Doug tossed out the idea of having the wedding at our house. We purchased the house three months after our engagement," says the bride. Both the ceremony and reception took place on the lawn.
Kim and Doug wanted a local favor that guests would be able to use, so they gave everyone a jar of blackberry or strawberry jelly from McCutcheons in Frederick, Maryland at their place setting. They customized the labels to read: “Thanks for making our day sweeter.”