We have a pretty as can be Spring wedding on deck for you with plenty of fantastically elegant blooms, high style, and lots of smiles! Jenn & Tim's wedding weekend kicked off our 2018 season, and boy did they kick the season off on a high note. We can't thank them and their families enough for their continued support and sticking with us as we rebuild the barn...but as you will see there is nothing quite like a spring wedding under the beauty of an airy big top! Enjoy a few highlights from the talented Jessie Wyman Photography - and view the full album HERE.
What is that tree doing at the top of our construction site? In building, especially timber structures the topping out ceremony (sometimes referred to as topping off) is done when the very last beam is put into place.
The practice of "topping out" a new building can be traced to the ancient Scandinavian religious rite of placing a tree atop a new building to appease the tree-dwelling spirits displaced in its construction. Over time the tradition has become more of a way to give thanks and show respect to the earth for it's valuable resources.
On a snowy day in April a small sapling was placed at the very tip top of our structure - 36 feet high to be exact. We celebrated, rejoiced, and gave thanks to the incredible forest these Western Fir beams were sourced from!
We hope that you will follow along on this journey of rebuiling and renewal. Follow and "like" us on Facebook and Instagram to get the latest updates on our progress. Social media links below.
The first signs of spring have arrived here at The Preserve, and you know what that means? Wedding season has begun. With that we give you this June wedding that was delicate and timeless in its beauty. The focus for Mike and Alana was on their 200+ wedding guests as well their sweet well behaved fur baby Alton.
Fresh food by the Common Man, light cocktails, and a jammin' band made their guest experience perfection. Read a little about their once in a lifetime "lovefest" straight from the bride and groom themselves. See the full gallery here, and check out their wedding video at the end of this post, go get the tissues...that first look gives us all the feels.
How DID YOU fIND The Preserve?
Facebook! A girl I went to college with (& was friends with on Facebook) posted about the new venue.
Why did you and Mike connect with The Preserve?
It was important to us to have a place that we could 'take over' for the weekend if that makes sense - that was ours to share with our family & friends & not have to worry about sharing space with other events/weddings going on. The property was gorgeous & gave us a beautiful canvas to really make our own. The barn was large enough to fit the over 200 people we were planning to have at the wedding - & the fact that we could have our beloved fur baby, Alton, with us all weekend running around the large property, sealed the deal!
Was youR weekend different from other weddings you have attended and why?
It was such a warm, welcoming weekend from start to finish - & I think our guests picked up on that. We actually still get approached by people who attended telling us that it was the most beautiful wedding - down to the last detail - but so laid back & welcoming at the same time. Which is EXACTLY the feeling we wanted everyone to have.
You could feel the love in the air the entire weekend, between us (the bride & groom), between our guests & us - between everyone. It was a lovefest!
The property slowly transformed from the time you booked until your big day, what was most surprising when you arrived?
That pavilion! The pavilion on the side of the barn was a pleasant surprise when we went for our last site visit before the wedding. We loved it so much that we decided to host our rehearsal dinner & welcome party underneath it - with marshmellows & all the fixings for s'mores to roast over the fire!
What was the overall feeling you wanted to create during the weekend? Do you feel you succeeded?
Oh gosh, if I had a dollar for every-time I told our planner I wanted the vibe of our wedding to be 'rustic luxe' or 'rustic elegant', I could have paid for the entire wedding with that :) Mike & I both really wanted it to be in a barn, but still feel classic, elegant and light. Between the hanging votives throughout the barn, the candles in the centerpieces/throughout the venue & the whites/blushes we incorporated via the flowers, draping & other details, I think we definitely succeeded!
If you could do anything different would you?
Stressing about such minor details! I'm fairly certain no one noticed that we walked in at the :34 second mark of our introduction song :)
Wedding Dress | Willowby Waters
Bridesmaids Attire | The Dessy Collection in Blush
Bridesmaids Robes Silk and More shop on Etsy | https://www.etsy.com/shop/silkandmore
Groom Attire | Tom James
Groomsmen Ties | Vineyard Vines
Brides Jewelry | Etsy Four Threads': https://www.etsy.com/shop/FourThreads
Caterer | The Common Man
Florist | Free Range Floral
Photographer | Eric Snyder Weddings
Videography | ARA Wedding Films
Spring weddings means warmer temperatures, vivid blooms, and the addition of light & airy event decor. We're suckers for anything clean, chic, and a littler modern. "Clearly" these acrylic event decor pieces will add just the right unexpected and elegant touch to your wedding day vision. Whats even better? Several of these examples are DIY friendly, so get to your nearest hardware store for some acrylic pieces, and get decorating!
ACRYLIC WEDDING INVITATIONS
ACRYLIC TABLE NUMBERS
ELEGANT LUCITE WEDDING CHAIRS
A CLEAN ESCORT CARD
ACRYLIC WELCOME SIGN
A PLEXI MENU CARD
We have been waiting to share this wedding on the blog & website for a while now, but Lisa and Andrea have been enjoying the adventures of life such as honeymoon, a big move to Maine, and then oh yeah that little thing called the Bomb Cyclone! We finally had the opportunity to reconnect to recap the weekend.
This wedding was spectacular on so many levels, but the deep personal connection between the couple and their guests was oh so obvious! We will never tire of a good laid back, authentic wedding that truly reflects the couple and their union. These two joyful ladies created a warm and welcoming weekend escape that their family and friends won't soon forget. They were the first couple to sign their marriage license during the ceremony, and the setup was absolute perfection! Take a look at some snapshots as seen through the eyes of Channing Johnson; their photographer...and check out the full album on our site here!
Read on for some thoughts from Lisa & Andrea.
"We received endless compliments from our guests about the venue. From the onsite rehearsal dinner cookout through the reception, people were at ease and in awe of the space. It makes a huge difference knowing you don't have to set up and take down everything in one day and I think our guests picked up that we were relaxed and stress-free because of that. I could go on and on."
"You, Mary and Ed were incredibly supportive throughout he entire process. I never felt bad reaching out or that I was inconveniencing you in any way, which is important when planning a wedding remotely."
"Having access to the venue was crucial and we loved having the unique experience of seeing The Preserve evolve. I know it personally made me feel more connected to the property."
If you are anything like us this time of year is a blur. The hosting, the celebrating, the shopping, the wrapping, and oh yeah the decorating! If you are in need of some quick last minute decor inspiration to impress those guests look no further. It doesn't take much to make your home look perfectly polished for the holidays! Cheers!
CREATE A WARM WELCOME
It doesn't take much to make your front porch look festive. Use what you've got such as a a sled, skates, a sign, anything winter related could work. Use greenery or even a tree to set the stage, lights not required! We love a good natural tree.
BAUBLES AND BALLS
Have some extra ornaments lying around? Toss them in unique vessels, clear vases, wood boxes, trays, bowls, the list goes on. It's quick, easy, and adds a bright and shiny touch to any room.
CREATE A WARM GLOW
A warm fireplace and a glowing tree go a long way in setting the mood.
SOFTEN WITH PILLOWS AND BLANKETS
Create a warm and cozy holiday look with accent pillows, and a basket of blankets. Your guests will appreciate the seasonal and warm accent decor. Happy Holidays from The Preserve!
There are moments in our lives that define us, moments so vivid that just recalling the event brings you back to that instance in time. We believe that these moments mold our character, and shape our purpose and path in life. We are defined by how we react to these moments and rise to the challenges they present.
For the Preserve Family that moment was the total loss of the Hayford Barn on the night of Nov. 12th. It had not only affected us but the local community that has enjoyed the facility for countless years, as well as all the couples who cherish the memories of their “special day” and the families that vacationed here for generations.
Sometimes it takes the worst to bring out the best in all of us, we have witnessed that from the overwhelming outpouring of love and support from everyone around us.
Now it is time to move forward. Just a week after the Fire Marshal was pouring over the charred timbers, unable to determine a cause, an excavator will begin the task of removing the debris to make way for a new structure. On Monday a design/build team complete with an architect will assemble onsite to begin the process of creating the new barn. A barn that will be old in style but new in technology and efficiency that will host weddings, events, and community gatherings for generations to come.
Until the new barn is in up and running we will host many “Best Day Evers” under a beautifully tented event space. We are so grateful and thankful that our 2017 through 2019 couples and their families have stuck with us and have showed their support for our rebuilding efforts. We look forward to delivering on our commitment to provide an incredible wedding weekend experience.
The Ice House Pavilion and Gazebo will be rebuilt and all accommodations in the Farmhouse and Cottages will be available. The new deck will have to wait until we have a barn to attach it to but will be also be completed.
We have learned that the Preserve is more than just a place to be married, hold a concert or community benefit. The Preserve has a soul and character forged by its 200+ year history. All those who have enjoyed it, have made it the legacy it has become. We look forward to continuing the legacy with wonderful families, brides, grooms, and the community. Our path forward is owed to all of you!
We adore couples that add a little twist to the traditional when it comes to their wedding day design. Rick and Sara totally nailed the combination of feminine elegance with that little added cool factor. It was the first wedding of the 2017 season, and WOW did they knock it out of the park.
The bride Sara planned every last detail down to the names of her signature cocktails. You will see how she contrasted antique blush tones with metals, blues, and grays, for a truly a stunning combination. And lets not forget the Mother of the Bride in this wedding, seriously how gorgeous is she in that full length beaded gown? She is proof that brides don't have to be the only stylish lady at a wedding. We took the time to interview the bride about a few details of the weekend, here is what she had to say....we love her advice to future couples!
Your wedding was visually stunning, if you had to describe your wedding day style/look in a few short sentences what would it be?
When I found the dress, a year before the wedding, it inspired my vision for the wedding. The tulle wedding dress was ivory on the top with a high neckline and intricate beading in ivory and silver throughout, the bottom of the dress progressed to an antique blush. We wanted the wedding to feel warm, whimsical and romantic , our color palette was ivory, green, metals, and blush, since my dress was blush the groomsmen wore blush ties with their grey suits, the bridesmaids wore convertible soft tulle blue dresses made by jennyyoo which made my dress stand out and they had blush and ivory florals. The flowers really showcased the whimsical vibe I envisioned, and the lighting made it very romantic, we also wanted personal touches and style everywhere. We had custom signage everywhere, signature drinks named after our pups, and custom sneakers for the groomsmen, the font we chose was a mix of cursive and more casual font to blend everything together.
What did you love most about being married in the Spring?
We met in the spring, so getting married during that time of year just felt right. Rick's family is from Northern California and he grew up in the mountains, we were really grateful to have the scenic mountain views in New Hampshire. We loved that this was a destination wedding for everyone, and that we could all spend the weekend together. It completed the feeling of togetherness and warmth that we wanted to feel during our wedding.
Do you have any planning advice for future couples that are recently engaged?
Stay true to what you envision and do not compromise just because it may not be the easiest or most traditional route. It is your wedding and you both should be happy and have it represent you as a couple. Having a long weekend away was amazing but it did add more work for me as the bride since I had to figure out where everyone would be sleeping and where I wanted everyone to get ready etc. but it was really worth it for the experience that we got to have with our families, plus the ease of having everyone on site was amazing.
We are both very creative people, so it was important for me to find vendors that got our unique style and vision but to also to let them do what they do best and not to micromanage them. I think this made them more excited about our wedding because we collaborated and they could be creative too. The flowers turned out way better than I could have imagined, and I think that freedom was a big contributor to the final look.
Another huge piece of advice is to be in the moment and let go of all of the planning once the wedding is upon you, you planned everything to the best of your ability, you got the vendors that you love, so it is time to trust them and have fun!
Looking back on your wedding weekend what moment and or moments stick out in your mind?
There are really so many. When couples ask us what moment we appreciate the most, Rick and I agree. The Preserve is such a unique venue, there is so much character inside and outside the Inn. One place in particular was a bar in the inn, that is so special. I arranged with the caterer to have signature drinks and every hors'devours waiting at the bar in the inn for just the two of us right after the ceremony. I asked our bridal party to lead every guest to our cocktail party while we shared the intimate moment alone as a just married couple. We were able to talk about the ceremony and share in the special feeling of being married now. It was really special and important because after that we were talking with our friends and families for the rest of the night.
For the full gallery click here. And check out the incredible vendor team that made their dream day a reality.
Photographer | Thuy Pham
Florist | Moonset Farm
Catering and Event Rentals | Peppers Artful Events
Event Lighting | CJC Event Lighting
Calligraphy and Signage | Alli Breslin (Allibreslin@gmail.com)
Wedding Planner | The Bride
Brides Dress | BHLDN
Head Piece | Alice & Mae
Earrings | Holly Yashi
Manners Monday seems like an appropriate name for this blog post! We get so many questions about wedding etiquette and "standard" protocol that we decided to weigh in on some of the unspoken rules of weddings and events. Starting with wedding gifts. We've never been sticklers for hard and fast rules, but everyone knows that good manners never go out of style.
The "rules" of modern wedding etiquette and gift giving are constantly changing with the times. Let us help you put your best foot forward with the modern take on the DO's & DON'TS of gifting.
Say yes to the group gift.
Many couples say that this is their favorite type of gift to receive. It's thoughtful, and often helps lighten the financial load on a big ticket item the couple really wants.
Find out where the couple is registered.
With so many registry options out there, couples are getting more and more adventurous with their registry picks. Find out where they are registered and stick to the gift registry when selecting something for the couple.
PS - we love ZOLA for wedding registries. It truly is the registry that offers it all, including but not limited to...adventure experiences, kitchen appliances, bed & bath items, furniture, outdoor gear, and even allows guests to give cash if they so choose. ZOLA also carries many brands that our couples adore such as Calaphalon, Safavieh, Ralph Lauren, Kitchen Aid, and Backcountry.
Write a thoughtful note.
Most couples will hold on to their favorite wedding cards and look back on them for years to come. Take the time to craft a heartfelt message to the couples. Maybe include how you met them, advice for the future, funny memories, the possibilities are endless. Keep it authentic!
Stress over budget.
The old "spend enough to cover the cost of your plate" is exactly that....old. If you were lucky enough to snag a spot on the guest list you are clearly near and dear to the couples heart. Spend what you feel is appropriate, the bride and groom will just be happy to have you present on their day.
Wait to send or purchase a gift.
Purchase early to allow ample time for shipping and delivery. If for some reason you missed the window of opportunity to send a gift prior to the wedding, try to get a congratulatory gift to the new couple within two months of the big day.
We hope these tips will help you navigate the art of gift giving during the upcoming engagement and wedding season. Cheers!
Need some inspiration for your upcoming terrifyingly chic halloween bash? Look no further, our ideas will ensure your guest have a wicked good time!
LIGHT IT UP
Lighting is everything! Too bright and your sure to kill a spooky party vibe, make sure interior lights are on a dimmer and go crazy with the exterior lights. Flooding your home in a spooky color really sets the scene.
STICK WITH A SIMPLE COLOR SCEME
Stick with a simple color palette, and it doesn't have to be traditional orange and black. In fact selecting even just one focus color can create a sophisticated feel. Select shades of green to create a creepy crawly feeling.
INCORPORTE SEASONAL ELEMENTS
Look to nature for inspiration by incorporating seasonal and darkly hued fruits. Tres chic, and edible! It's a win win!
AN EXPERIENCE FOR THE SENSES...
It's more than just decor....consider different sensory elements of the party. Food plays a major role in setting the spooktacular scene. Serve food that is simple, primitive in nature, and of course wickedly delicious.
Reputation is everything, that's why we're happy to announce that we've earned the WeddingWire Rated Bronze badge! Feel free to browse some of the kind words other couples have left about their experiece at The Preserve.
Words cannot adequately express how much my husband and I loved getting married at the Preserve at Chocorua. It is the most stunning property, with so much rustic New England charm, all thanks to the hard work of the wonderful owners Mary, Ed, and Samantha. From the moment I first called to inquire about touring the property, right through every step of our wedding weekend, they were so communicative, kind, and thoughtful. They listened to every detail so attentively, fielded every question with such patience, and each time I visited the property made me feel so at ease in the midst of what was otherwise a pretty stressful cross-country wedding planning process.
Our friends and family loved the cottages and rooms in the inn where they got to stay during our celebration, and we loved having our closest friends and family members right there on site with us for our whole wedding weekend! The property offers such a diverse array of spaces for all types of events, large or small, indoor or outdoor, in any weather. We loved getting creative and trying to plan things that would show our guests each of the amazing spaces that the Preserve has to offer!
I could go on and on, but even as I write this I begin to tear up. In short, Mary, Ed, Samantha, their whole team, and the magic of the Preserve itself helped to create the wedding of our dreams, and we could not be more grateful. If you are looking for an intimate, flexible, personalized, cozy New England venue experience, the Preserve is the absolute best there is.
Well hello again! We've been busy bees these past few months with weddings, events, and updates on the property! Here's a peek at some of the highlights....
1. The Best of Instagram....ya'll double tapped this photo the most!
2. We've got an amazing new product line to share WITH guests. WEDDING GOERS will enjoy Beekman made in The USA products of lush, warm amber tones. Honey infused formulations, perfected by nature and thoughtfully prepared by the experts at Beekman 1802.
3. The barn entry got and upgrade! Bye bye screen door.
4. We've had some stellar weddings going on!
As always, check back often and follow us on instagram, facebook, and twitter for real time updates and photos!
It's no secret that summer is one of the most popular times to tie the knot. The long hours of sunlight, warm days, and cool nights make it an ideal season for your nuptials. Hosting an unforgettable summer soiree is easy as 1, 2, 3, with these tips!
KEEP GUESTS COOL
Help keep your guests comfortable by offering program fans pre-ceremony, and a cool refreshing cocktail afterwards.
TIMING IS EVERYTHING
Save your guests from sitting out in the heat by opting for a sunset ceremony when things cool off a bit, and then celebrate with an evening reception.
BRING ON THE DESSERT
Last but not least, choose a fun, refreshing, and thoughtful dessert station. Check out a few of our favorites. Can you tell we totally dig a good dessert? Happy summer!
This People of the Preserve installment holds a special place in our hearts. We did a write up on this fantastic couple before they were married, and now here we are coming full circle! This June bride was the epitome of elegance and grace. When the weather didn't necessarily cooperate she refused to let that ruffle her wedding day feathers, and chose to embrace with a warm and cozy barn ceremony.
What did you look forward to most about having your wedding at The Preserve?
The thing I looked forward to the most was getting to marry the love of my life in my dream wedding location with my family and friends.
What do you think was the most unique part of your wedding?
The most unique part of our wedding was that all of our family and friends helped us make our special day. My aunt catered the wedding, my friend was the DJ and the officiant was Luke's uncle!
What was your first dance song?
Our first dance song was L-O-V-E by Nat King Cole.
Would you share your favorite photo of the day with US? There were so many, we couldn’t pick, so we want you to pick.
In one word, close your eyes and what is the first word you think of when you think of your wedding?
The word I thought of was Perfect :)
Thank you Liz & Luke for sharing such a special day with us, and as always to our followers be sure to "like" us on Facebook & Follow us on Instagram for the most up to date info on all our happenings!
Calling all past, present, and future couples of The Preserve... come join us for a 10 day festival chalk full of music, food, artisan crafts, provisions, wine & spirits, workshops for the young and old. Take this wonderful opportunity to immerser yourself into all that Tamworth has to offer.
Head on over to the MADE site to get the full schedule of events.
What does it take to get a published feature on a nationally known wedding blog? A lot of hard work, an "A" team of vendors, and some jaw dropping images that you just can't look away from!
Before all the pretty images come to the surface A LOT of unglamorous (is that a word?) work happens behind the scenes, in the months, weeks, and days leading up to the shoot. Here is just a glimpse of our little world and the behind the scenes action!
First: We road trip to the location! New Hampshire here we come! As many of you know Mary & Ed are on site day to day, and Samantha is very much behind the scenes answering calls, composing contracts, creating and executing marketing material, and ensuring that photo shoots go off without a hitch! Banks (2) and Penn (6months) were along for the 23 hour ride!
Next, we prepped photo shoot props and styled rooms. No pillow was left unfluffed, no bed skirt was left untouched.
Model prep, photographers on site, we are ready to roll! Oh and yes those are two babies on the living room couch enjoying Sesame Street & munching on what I'm sure are sugar filled snacks while mom works! Real life folks!
And the styling begins...
Some outside shots from the day. Every single one of the vendors involved braved the frigid temperatures to capture just the perfect shot!
And the final product...
We hope you enjoyed this little sneak peek behind the scenes of a styled shoot. All of the fantastic vendors are listed blow and you can find the post from Cake & Lace here.
Photography: CAROLINA MARLES PHOTOGRAPHY | Second Shooter: JESSIE WYMAN PHOTOGRAPHY | Venue: THE PRESERVE AT CHOCORUA | Wedding Planner & Coordinator: DOTING AND DETAILS | Florist: MOONSET FARMS | Cake: CAKES FOR ALL SEASONS | Hair & Makeup: CKINGS HAIR SALON | Dress: LACE AND LIBERTY | Suit: THE BLACK TUX | Stationery: THE VINTAGE INKWELL | Signage: LETTER AND ADORE | Models: Marissa and D Adam Voelbel
A spring wedding; just picture it... pretty pastels, peonies, light and refreshing food and beverage options...there are so many reasons to get married in spring. Here are a few of our top reasons to consider a spring wedding.
1. Budget budget budget.
March, April, and May are often considered "shoulder months" for many venues and you will likely find them willing to be a bit more flexible when it comes to pricing and packages. You can often times get the most bang for your buck during the spring season.
2. Tent anyone?
Unlike the chilly fall or winter seasons, spring is a fantastic time for a tented reception. Did you know that we host tented receptions on property at no additional fee? Just ask!
3. Fewer conflicting events.
Spring time is not as chalk full off other commitments like summer and hoiday seasons can be. Guests don't have as many obligations to other events such as other weddings, graduations, vacations, etc.
4. Colorful flowers and foods.
Spring is the beginning of the blooming season, vibrant flowers are beginning to arrive, and fresh colorful produce has begun to make its was back into the local catering rotation.
Spring showers. It can be a bit of a risk to get married outdoors during the rainy season but we think the photos are totally worth it!
Image Credits | WeddingParty by WedPics
On the eve of Super Bowl we thought it fitting to post a blog about "how to tastefully incorporate sports into your reception." Many couples have strong ties spanning the generations to their beloved sports teams. Some of our couples have even met on the playing field! So it goes without saying that sports can play a big role in our lives. We have come up with a few fantastic ways to give a nod to all things sports during your special event or reception.
GRASS ESCORT CARD DISPLAY
Display your guest seating cards on a perfectly manicured section of grass. Color, texture, fun!
TAKE THE TAILGATE UP A NOTCH
Elevate the traditional tailgate setup by incorporating unexpected pieces in a fun way. Don't just serve ice cold beer, serve it out of the back of a vintage truck. How fun is that?
Incorporating fun tailgate foods into the reception is a given. We love a "mini" anything, but these crispy loaded mini hasselback potatoes are sure to be a winner!
LAST BUT NOT LEAST....DESSERT!
A nod to your favorite team (THE PATRIOTS OF COURSE) on game day can easily be accomplished through a fun dessert or a Grooms cake.
Have a safe, happy, and fun Super Bowl! Go Pats!
Today's person of the Preserve is a man of few words, with loads of talent! How we stumbled upon a gem like Mr. Jim Greene is a story of pure happenstance, it's funny how life sometimes has impeccable timing. Without Jim Greene, (Project Manager) there is no way this sprawling property would be where it is today. His carpentry, handyman skills, and his good ole Yankee work ethic make Jim an irreplaceable member of our team. Here is what Jim had to say during his interview...
What was your project at The Preserve today?
Replace the Great Room ceiling.
What do you like best about being a steward to the Preserve?
Working with Ed.
What had been your favorite project to date?
"The Barn doors, they are pretty nifty." Jim and Ed repaired the old barn doors on the back side of the barn and made them completely functional again. We agree...pretty NIFTY!
Where were you and your wife married?
We had a beautiful outdoor wedding and reception at her parent’s house in Holderness, NH
How long have you been married?
Forty Two Years
What is at the top of your bucket list to do with your wife?
Travel back to England.
Advice to our newly married Preserve couples?
Remember these things, It takes two to tango. You have to always give and take, but most of all remember; behind every good man is a better woman.