Seeds of Love


Just part of the bounty donated so generously by our wonderful friends

There is a saying, usually ascribed as an African proverb which says "It takes a village to raise a child". Well I'd like to take some poetic license with that and say "It takes a village to prepare for your child's wedding".

Anyone who has ever been involved in planning for a wedding knows there are lots of details to attend to. When you are the 'Mother of the Bride', providing your garden as the venue AND doing the flowers you may appreciate that the stress levels are perhaps a little higher than usual. After all we want everything to be perfect don't we? Thank heavens for my 'village'.

A veritable army of friends surrounded us with love and lots of flowers as we prepared for my daughters wedding on August 3rd!

Friday August 2nd was our day to gather and arrange flowers. Friday August 2nd was also the first time it had rained in over 30 days – and rain it did!


I mean really all you can do is laugh isn't it?

Still gardeners refuse to be daunted by rain. As my daughter Katie said, it stopped the flowers from wilting.

While most of the flowers were either grown in our garden, gathered from our woods or generously donated by friends we visited a local flower farm to pick a few special stems. My wonderful friend Debra Prinzing, author of Slow Flowers had awakened me to the concept of buying local and these fields are just minutes from our home.


Katie and I scan the beautiful dahlias to select just the right colors


Poppy seed heads were a perfect addition to the bouquets

Having gathered everything together we now had bouquets to assemble. I can design containers easily but bouquets are something else entirely. We were thrilled that our friend and neighbor Marcia offered her expertise.


Our talented neighbor worked with Katie to create stunning bouquets

Katie's maid of honor, Amy Denton was also a floral superstar when it came to the back breaking work of wiring foliage and flowers onto the arbor swag.


Head down – Amy at work!

Then there were jars of flowers to fill for the tables, aisle and archway. That took a rather less artistry so was more within my comfort zone but it took quite a few people to help get them to our barn for safe keeping overnight, then setting them out on the day of the wedding.


Thankfully the wedding day was mild and sunny after just a few hesitant sprinkles. Flowers were set in place by willing helpers and the swag was hung with the help of two ladders, four people, lots of zip ties and a collective held breath!


As we all changed into our wedding finery I couldn't help but reflect upon how thankful I am for friends and family. They are such a blessing to us and we  appreciate every one. This special day will be all the more memorable for the love they shared with us.

(And yes, I will post a few photos of the actual wedding, the garden bouquets and more special moments in the near future!)

My thanks to our special friend Gethyn Clothier who after travelling from Hong Kong took all these photographs, played the keyboard, washed dishes, helped with decorations and did a million other things – you are family to us.

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  1. Katie on August 13, 2013 at 10:34 pm

    LOVE this!!! Thank goodness for amazing family & friends 🙂

    • Karen Chapman on August 14, 2013 at 9:40 pm

      Happy times Katie XX

  2. Patrick on August 14, 2013 at 5:40 am

    What an assignment to take on as mother of the bride. I wish you would have shown more images of the final display. If this intro was reflective of all your work, then I'm sure your daughter was very proud of you and the final product.

    • Karen Chapman on August 14, 2013 at 9:41 pm

      I wish I had some to show you Patrick! We are waiting for the 'official' photos. We were all pretty busy as the last of these was taken! I promise I'll do a follow up post though

  3. Heidi Kaster on August 14, 2013 at 6:33 am

    Congrats. Looks like a wonderful day. So many beautiful things right in our own back yard. I love the county look. Each flower is special and each arrangement is different so it make is more interesting.

    • Karen Chapman on August 14, 2013 at 9:42 pm

      You're so right Heidi – every flower holds a special memory. You can't wish for more than that

  4. Ingrida on August 14, 2013 at 8:21 am

    Beautiful post! Made my eyes swell up… Must be the flowers… 🙂

    • Karen Chapman on August 14, 2013 at 9:42 pm

      Ingrida – that was my excuse!

  5. Carolyn @ Carolyn's Shade Gardens on August 24, 2013 at 7:03 am

    What a gorgeous venue for a wedding. It must have been a lot of extra work to have it at your house but also a lot of extra joy.

    • Karen Chapman on August 28, 2013 at 1:29 pm

      You're right on both accounts Carolyn!

  6. Jana Lombardi on August 28, 2013 at 12:00 pm

    What a beautiful location! After a gorgeous summer without rain (it even stopped before July 5th!), what fun to have a cool wet day to prepare. Congratulations to you and your family!

    • Karen Chapman on August 28, 2013 at 1:29 pm

      Thank you Jana!

  7. debsgarden on August 31, 2013 at 7:29 am

    What a wonderful wedding that must have been. The flowers were spectacular, and the wedding venue was a slice from paradise. No doubt both you and Katie will share treasured memories forever.

  8. Kathy Juracek on September 8, 2013 at 8:47 am

    Just Awesome!

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