The wedding of Courtney & Bradley:

Where fairies and Big Fish meet the backyard.


All of my various artists jack of all trades skills really come in handy with event planning.  All of my skills were put to the test when Courtney announced her engagement to Bradley.  They immediately announced me as chief wedding coordinator, and for a small, backyard wedding, coordinating means doing pretty much everything.  We agreed upon a mash up of themes that we all love, Big Fish (the movie and the groom’s self proclaimed biography) meets Alice in Wonderland meets backyard rustic meets all things nature.

So much was done for this wedding, I hardly know where to begin, so I shall start chronologically.

The Invitations.

The invitations are usually the first impression of what your wedding is going to be like, so Courtney and Bradley wanted to show that it was going to be very handmade and natural, but fun.

Wedding Invitation design. Hand lettered envelope. Big fish themed wedding invitation. Rustic wedding invitation, kraft.|Art, Design and more found at www.optimisticallygreen.comI designed these invitations to communicate the themes of the wedding – they feature the shoe-line and keys of Big Fish, the recycled kraft paper that they were printed communicates a feeling of rusticness, as does the lace and hemp string wrapped around the folded invite, with a dried purple flower to top it off.  I hand addressed all of the envelopes, and hand carved a rubber stamp with the bride and groom’s return address.  They chose a light shimmery purple ink.  

The Programs.

The bride supplied me with this quote, and said that she wanted illustrations of toadstools and greenery circling the quote on the back of the program, and told me to do whatever I thought was good for the front.  I took this opportunity to communicate the fun, casual, untraditional feeling of this wedding using just first names and loosely scheduled events.

 Wedding Program Design. Alternative wedding. Rustic Wedding Program. Casual Wedding Program.|Art, Design and more found at www.optimisticallygreen.comWedding Program Design. Alternative wedding. Rustic Wedding Program. Casual Wedding Program.|Art, Design and more found at

The Center Pieces.

The Pièce De Résistance of this wedding!  All 15 of them were hand built by yours truly, with pieces of nature I had been collecting since the engagement was announced.  The pictures speak for themselves.

fairyhousefairy house 3

fairy house 2

head table

The sweetheart table center piece was quite the undertaking.  It is built to be a replica of the house in Big Fish.  It is adorned with many other pieces of the movie including the shoe-line, a field of yellow flowers, a white picket fence, and Brad’s favorite quote from the movie.

master house master house 3 master house 2

The Signage.  

Hand lettering on wood, chalkboards, and a couple of graphics made to imitate chalkboards all showing the rustic style of the wedding.

let the adventuremenu




Corn Hole Boards.

Brad asked me to do this style where it looked sort of like an optical illusion.  Hand painted by me!


The Decorations.

The bride and I planned the burlap banners everywhere, and I showed her and some other helping hands how to cut them and arrange them.  Many hand painted ones by me.  The shoeline is hung with my shoes.



The Portrait Painting.

This was an early wedding/birthday gift to Courtney from me.  Watercolour and acrylic on paper.  It shows Brad and Courtney as the young couple in Big Fish.  The shoe-line adorns the top of the painting.  Toadstools and other nature elements frame the couple.  Then I hot glued a bunch of sticks to the frame for a more rustic look!


2 head table

The Cake.



I made a two tier main cake for the bride and groom and wedding party, and cupcakes for the rest of the guests.  I made 3 lovely flavours – chocolate zucchini, carrot, and kentucky butter/vanilla.  All of them were topped with variations on a cream cheese frosting.  The cupcakes were adorned with handmade merengue “mushrooms.”  The wedding cake was adorned with handmade marshmallow fondant, succulents and moss.

 me and court

To end this post: here’s a picture of the bride and me!  I made her flower crown and little floral arrangements on bobby pins for all of the bridesmaids.